In this issue of Gaudiya Touchstone, Gaura Gopala shows us how to make a delicious quiche (pronounced as KEESH). Quiche is an open-faced pastry crust with a savoury filling. This is a perfect lunch or dinner main course.

Ingredients for pastry crust:

1/2 cup (125ml) melted butter
1 1/2 (375ml) wholewheat flour
4 tablespoons (60ml) cold water, or as required.
(optional) 1/4 cup (60ml) grated parmesan cheese

Ingredients for filling:

4 tablespoons (60ml) sour cream (alternatively yogurt can be used as a substitute)
4 tablespoons (60ml) cream cheese (alternatively fresh curd kneaded into a paste and mixed with a pinch of salt works very well)
4 tablespoons (60ml) tomato paste
2 tablespoons (30ml) cornflour
1 teaspoon (5ml) salt
1/2 teaspoon (2.5ml) ground black pepper
1 1/2 cup (350ml) grated cheddar cheese (alternatively fresh curd kneaded into a paste and mixed with a pinch of salt)
1/2 teaspoon (2ml) dried basil
1/2 teaspoon (2ml) dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon (2ml) asafoetida powder
3 cups (700ml) bell peppers diced and lightly steamed
2 medium tomatoes sliced into rings or crescents

Preparing the pastry crust:

Combine the butter and flour, rubbing well until it reaches a coarse meal consistency. Add the water and the parmesan cheese to the mixture and mix to form a firm pastry. Only mix as much as necessary to get a smooth soft pastry dough. Do not knead the dough - over mixing can result in a stretchy dough. Lightly butter a 8" (20cm) pie tin in preparation for the pastry dough.

Roll the pastry dough on a lightly floured surface into a circle slightly larger than your pie tin (11-12 inches / 28-30cm). Lift the crust from the surface by dusting your rolling pin with flour and gently rolling the pastry crust onto the rolling pin and then unrolling it on top of your pie tin pressing it into place and cutting off any excess with a pair of scissors. Alternatively your can press the mixture into your buttered pie tin with your hands, being careful that the crust mixture is evenly distributed.

2) Bake the quiche crust in a hot oven (200ºC / 390ºF) until light golden brown. Allow to cool.

3) Combine the sour cream, cream cheese, tomato paste, cornflour, salt, pepper, one cup of cheese (250ml), herbs and spices, and mix well. Mix in the bell peppers and spoon the mixture into the cooled quiche crust, smooth out, press the slices of tomato on top, sprinkle with the remaining cheese, and bake in a preheated oven (200ºC / 390ºF) for about 20 minutes or until the filling is set or the top is golden. Allow 30 minutes to cool before cutting and serving.