Wild salmon and asparagus quiches Recipe

  • 500g/1lb 2oz plain flour, plus extra for dusting
  • pinch salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tsp dried parsley
  • 250g/9oz cold butter, cut into cubes
  • 4 medium free-range egg yolks
  • 100ml/3½fl oz ice-cold water
  • 1 free-range egg, beaten, for egg wash
  • drizzle olive oil
  • 3 x 110g/4oz boneless wild salmon fillets
  • 3 sprigs fresh dill
  • ½ tsp chilli flakes
  • 2 garlic cloves, lightly crushed
  • ½ lemon, sliced
  • 220g/8oz fine asparagus
  • large bowl ice cold water, for refreshing
  • 8 large free-range eggs
  • 160ml/5¾oz double cream
  • 200g/7oz Parmesan, finely grated
  • 100g/3½oz gruyère, finely grated
  • small bunch fresh chives
  1. In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour, salt, pepper and dried parsley. Add the cold, cubed butter and rub in with your fingertips until it is the texture of breadcrumbs (you can also do this in a food processor). Add the egg yolks and mix together with your hands, then slowly mix in the water little by little until it just comes together.
  2. Turn the pastry out onto the work surface and knead a few times very lightly to form into a ball. Try not to handle the pastry too much. Then divide the pastry in half, wrap in cling film and chill in the fridge for half an hour.
  3. For the filling, preheat the oven to 180C/160C Fan/Gas 4. Lay out a large sheet of aluminium foil and drizzle with olive oil. Lay the salmon fillets on the foil and top with the fresh dill, chilli flakes and garlic cloves, adding a generous amount of salt and freshly ground black pepper. Squeeze the lemon slices over the fish and lay them on top. Fold the foil over to make a loose pouch and seal the edges with double folds. Place the pouch onto a baking tray and bake the salmon for 10–15 minutes, depending on their thickness. Unwrap the fish, discard the herbs, garlic and lemon and set the fish aside to cool. Refrigerate until needed.
  4. Snap off the woody ends of the asparagus. Bring a large pan of salted water to the boil, add the asparagus and blanch for 1 minute. Plunge the asparagus into the bowl of ice cold water and drain when cool. Set aside 2 spears of asparagus, cut to 10cm/4in, per tart. Cut the rest into 1cm/½in pieces.
  5. Preheat the oven to 180C/160C Fan/Gas 4.
  6. Roll the pastry to 4mm thick and cut into 11cm/4¼in circles, re-rolling as needed, to line the mini pastry tins. Put the tins onto a baking tray and chill in the fridge for 10 minutes. (If you don’t have enough tins and are baking the pastry in batches, divide the pastry in half and chill the second batch while the others are baking.)
  7. Cut a square of baking paper slightly larger than the tart tins and scrunch them up to soften the paper. Put one square onto each pastry case and add a pile of baking beans. Bake the pastry cases for 15 minutes. Remove the paper squares and the baking beans, and brush the pastry cases with the egg wash. Return to the oven for a further 6 minutes.
  8. Meanwhile, in a bowl, mix together the eggs and double cream, adding a pinch salt and a good grind of black pepper. Set aside 30g/1oz of the grated Parmesan, then mix the remaining cheeses into the egg mixture. Snip in the fresh chives and mix to combine.
  9. Gently flake the cooked salmon in chunks into the baked pastry cases and with some asparagus pieces. Spoon over the egg mixture so that it fills the tart to the top (you may need to push the filling down into the gaps). Lay two crossed spears of asparagus on the top, and sprinkle over some reserved grated Parmesan.
  10. Bake the tarts for 15 minutes until golden-brown but with a slight wobble on top. Allow to cool for a few minutes before carefully turning out onto a cooling rack. Serve warm or cold with a crisp green salad.