Asparagus Quiche with ricotta & lemon

We decided to spend Spring Break in Texas. We needed to warm up a little after the long and cold winter in DC and Texas was still on our bucket list. As Europeans we are not used to ‘do’ an enormous state like Texas in a week, so we limited our trip to Austin and the Hill Country. We wanted to take in some music in the Live Music Capital of the World, to relax in the lush surroundings of the city, and of course have amazing food, since Austin is also well-known for its organic, local, and fresh food.

Laid-back and relaxed

Well, we had it all. We saw no one less then Stevie Wonder in a breathtaking performance, totally relaxed at the Sage Hill Inn amidst the green hills not far from Austin (see our former post), and had great food almost everywhere. But at Eden East we had the best and most laid-back, relaxed food experience of all.
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This little restaurant is situated at Springdale Farm with a green house and a beautiful vegetable garden. Amidst chickens, under blossoms, and with a view on the garden we had the perfect Easter Brunch there. Couldn’t have been much better. We were served delicious dishes made with the best local ingredients, accompanied by freshly made grapefruit Mimosa’s and Bloody Mary’s. We sat on long tables with other guests, some of them beautiful dressed up for Easter (we even spotted an (un)real cowboy).

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Asparagus Quiche

My favorite dish was the Asparagus Quiche with a soft, creamy filling. It was my first real spring dish of the year! The recipe reminded me of an old recipe of mine, which I had published a long time ago on another blog I had together with Petra. When we came home from Texas I immediately wanted to make it again and bring spring to our plates at home as well. No need to precook the asparagus!

Serves 6
Action Time: 25 minutes + 30 minutes resting and 50 minutes baking

For the crust:
8 oz/230 g spelt or whole wheat flour
1 stick/115 g cold butter, cut into pieces
½ tl salt
1 egg

For the filling:
9 oz/250 g ricotta
4 eggs
2.5 oz /75 g Parmesan cheese
a handful of fresh basil leaves, chopped, plus extra
grated zest and juice of ½ an organic lemon
about 14 oz/ 400 g not too thick green asparagus, trimmed

Extra: food processor, cling film, parchment paper, pie weights or dried beans, greased 10 inch (24 cm) tart pan

1. In a food processor combine flour, butter, salt and process until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs. Add the egg and 1 tbsp of ice cold water and pulse quickly 5 or 6 times, until the dough comes together, being careful not to mix any longer than necessary. Gather the ball into a thick ‘sausage’, wrap in cling film and refrigerate for about 30 minutes.

2. Preheat to oven to 400°F/ 200°C. Cut the dough sausage into 1/10 inch (3-4 mm) thick slices. Place the slices in and around the bottom and sides of the tart pan; push and press them together with your fingers until the whole pan is covered. Line the pastry with parchment paper and fill with the pie weights or dried beans. Bake for about 15 minutes in the oven. Remove from the oven and cool on a wire rack.

3. In a bowl, mix the ricotta with the eggs, salt and pepper. Add the Parmesan cheese, basil, lemon zest and juice. Pour the filling into the prebaked tart case. Cover with the whole asparagus: lay them close next to each other and alternate the heads.

4. Bake in the middle of the oven for about 35 minutes until set and golden. Leave to rest for 10-15 minutes before serving. Garnish with some basil leaves and serve lukewarm with a green salade on the side.

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