Tofu Quiche with Butternut Squash & Spinach

Ooooh….a simple savoury recipe! I realise that it’s mostly been all about the cake on here and yet I spend alot of my cafe time baking savoury vegan goodies. Sausage rolls, pizza, homemade cheddar and mozzarella and a whole lot of Vegan Quiche.

It’s October so we’ll be putting the quiche to sleep for winter and bringing out all of our delicious, heart warming soup recipes. So this is a good recipe for those of you who can’t wait until Spring for a slice of our quiche.

This quiche cuts into a generous 6 slices  and is great warm or cold. Its even robust enough for freezing either part baked or fully baked.

And if you have any shortcrust pastry over you can use it up with my Cherry and Almond Bakewell Slice recipe. Used Puff Pastry instead? Use up any leftovers with these easy peasy Cinnamon and apple swirls

 

Butternut Squash and Spinach Quiche Recipe

First off, get your block of silken tofu pressed. This is to remove some liquid from the block. The traditional way involves wrapping the block of tofu in kitchen towel to absorb the water, placing it on a plate with something heavy on top (usually  a balancing act of books) and leaving it all in the fridge for a while.

However, the clever people at Tofuture have invented a nifty Tofu press that is absolutely worth its weight in saffron. It’s a clever contraption that allows you to pop your tofu into the tofu block sized press (told you it was clever) with the water draining into a separate compartment. It’s small enough to leave in your fridge and works alot better than the book/kitchen towel method.

Anyway….whichever way you do it, get your silken tofu in a press for an hour while you do everything else.

1// Press silken tofu for around an hour, in fridge

2// Butternut squash into oven to bake. I use half a 750g bag of frozen squash because it’s so easy but fresh is fine too. Bake it until soft.

3// Fit a ready made roll of shortcrust pastry to a 10” flan tin. Don’t worry if you only have puff pastry – it works perfectly well, just with a flakier finish. Leave the pastry on its greaseproof paper to stop the pastry sticking to the tin. It might take a bit of cutting, folding and shaping but it will fit!

4// Poke holes in the bottom of the pastry with a fork. This is to stop pastry bubbles rising. Add another layer of baking paper and ideally a tub of baking beans to weigh the pastry down. I used a heatproof mug in my video but its not the best.

5// Blind bake the pastry for around 10 – 15 minutes at around Gas Mark 5. Until the pastry edges are a pale golden colour. Take out and allow to cool slightly. I occasionally use the pastry as soon as it’s out of the oven and haven’t noticed any difference whether it’s used  hot or cold.

6// Take your pressed block of tofu and scrape it into a mixing bowl. Discard the tofu water. Break up the tofu with an electric stick blender, but if you haven’t got an electric blender you can just use a fork like I’ve shown you in the video

7// Add 1 1/2 teaspoons of Rosemary, 1 teaspoon of thyme, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1/2 teaspoon pepper and 1/2 cup Nutritional Yeast to the tofu and mix. An electric blender is so much faster but be prepared to have an arm like Popeye if you’re using a fork.

8// Add a Tablespoon of Caramelised Onion Chutney if you have it. Or balsamic vinegar or caramelised onions if you haven’t. Mix again

9// Mix in a cup of  fresh spinach. I used half a cup of frozen and then defrosted spinach as it’s really easy to store but fresh spinach is good too.

10// Add the baked butternut squash and mix again.

11// Scrape the filling into the pastry base and smooth over.

12// Pop quiche back into oven at Gas mark 4 or 5 (170C – 190C) for around 20 minutes. When ready the pastry edge should be golden and the tofu should be set.

 

 

Easy Cinnamon & Apple Pastries

Mmmm….a tray of sticky Apple and cinnamon pastry swirls. Ready in minutes. And vegan.

Perfect.pastries1

Chuck away any need for weights or volumes or rules – these cinnamon rolls are pretty much made to taste.

If you don’t have Lotus Biscoff Spread (or shock, horror, just don’t like it) you could use jam of any flavour instead.

Mix it up a bit and add some sultanas to the apple sauce. Or blackberries when they’re in season for a different take on an old English favourite – blackberry and apple pie.

The Video is, I hope, self explanatory. But if you need a more formal typed out recipe, you’ll find it below.

 

 

To whip these apple pastries up in no time I use pre-made puff pastry. I’ve not found one that isn’t vegan but its best to check the labels. I used Jus-Rol in the video but all supermarkets have their own brand puff pastry.

General Recipe for pastries

1// Make up some cinnamon sugar. I use 1 teaspoon of ground cinnamon to every 2 tablespoons of brown sugar.

2// Roll out your puff pastry sheet

3// Spread on some warm biscoff spread (or jam)

I heated the biscoff jar in the microwave, on medium power for about 20 seconds.

4// Add your apple sauce

5// Sprinkle on some cinnamon sugar…

                                       ……and roll

6// Carefully cut the pastry roll into 1 1/2 – 2 inch wide pinwheels

7// Place the pinwheels onto a baking tray lined with greaseproof baking paper. Shape the pinwheels and leave a bit of space between each one.

8// Bake at as Gas Mark 5/ 190C for about 10-15 minutes. Until golden brown

9// Make up a drizzle icing with about 1 cup of icing sugar and a dash of water and stir.

10// When baked, drizzle warm biscoff spread (if using) and icing over the pastries.

11// Sprinkle over a bit more cinnamon sugar…

        …..and serve, while warm if possible

 

The best ever vegan Bakewell tart recipe. Ever.

These Cherry and Almond Bakewells are one of the biggest sellers at the cafe. They always have been and continue to be, even when there are more exciting cakes available. And that kind of sums up their popularity – people like being blanketed in comfort.

Comfort makes people happy. Especially in these confusing pre-general election, post Trump times. After all, a cup of tea seems to make everything OK again. If you add cake to the scenario, well……it could even erase away any thoughts on Brexit. But it would have to be very, very good cake.

And this could be it. Especially when it’s still warm from the oven and you take that first forkful. There’s something incredibly satisfying about hitting the pastry layer after the gooey soft sponge, followed by the tang of the cherries and flavour of the almonds…..are you dribbling yet?

Bakewell

This recipe makes 16 really good sized Bakewell slices. Keep your eyes out for my next post – Bakewell mug cake. For when you need Bakewell cake. Right now. This recipe here takes a bit longer than a mug cake for 1 but is very worth it. So here goes

 

The Best Ever Bakewell Slice Recipe. Vegan, too!

I know it’s boring and you want to get on with the good stuff but preheat your oven. Gas Mark 4 or 180c. Go on, switch it on now. You’ll thank me for it later.

1/ Dry Ingredients – Mix together the following in a bowl and set aside

200g Self Raising Flour

200g Caster Sugar

200g Ground Almonds

1 1/2 teaspoons Baking Powder

2/ Wet ingredients – in a jug, mix together the following and set aside

230ml Soya milk (or any plant milk)

180ml vegetable oil

1 1/2 teaspoons of almond essence

3/ Now before any wet/dry mixing goes on, fit a sheet of ready rolled pastry to your 11×13” tin.

Put that pastry in its place. Show it who’s boss….

As busy as I am, I use supermarket’s own or Jus Rol Shortcrust pastry sheet. It’s approximately 375g. And I leave it on its baking sheet too. cause that’s how I roll. Or un-roll.

IF THERE IS NO BAKING PAPER BACKING THE PASTRY OR YOU ARE MAKING YOUR OWN, YOU WILL NEED TO LINE THE TIN WITH BAKING PAPER BEFORE YOU ADD THE PASTRY. It is SO IMPORTANT that I’ve put it in capital letters.

If you are a domestic god or goddess then I’m sure that home made pastry would be as heavenly as you are. But remember to line the tin with baking paper.

4/ Then smother that pastry in half a jar of black cherry jam. And put to one side for a minute while you do the other important stuff….

Are you ready for some mixing now?

5/ Pour your wet ingredients into your dry ingredients and stir until just combined. 

 Then add about 175g Frozen Cherries

                                            …..and stir until mixed through

You need to be as quick as possible (without flicking cake batter all over your kitchen) in stirring the mixture until combined, pouring into the pastry & jam covered pan and getting it into the oven. The speed is an important part of making vegan cakes rise. So no taking a nap between mixing the batter and getting it into the oven. You need to do it straight away. Like, now. Pour that batter into the pan and get it even.

Quick, Quick….

6/ Into a preheated oven at Gas Mark 4, 180C for about 45mins – 1 hour. Until golden brown and cooked through.

Now you can sit back and relax and admire your awesomeness with the smell of blissful baking wafting through your house

7/ When your Bakewell is cooked and cooling, spread some warm cherry jam over the top and coat with either chopped or flaked almonds.

Now make your Drizzle icing

8/ I do this by eye, so hard to talk measurements. Basically, throw some icing sugar into a jug….I really don’t know how much, but lets say 100g. Then add a splash (and I really mean a splash) of water. And stir with a fork.

If the drizzle is too thick add just a drop more water. If too thin, you’re going to need to add a lot more icing sugar. You’re aiming for an average custard consistency.

Drizzle that icing over your Bakewell. Get creative. Own your cake…

                     ….and eat it 

If 16 slices is too much cake, you can always freeze it. These cakes freeze and defrost really well if they make it that far.

Good luck!

Let me know how yours turn out 🙂