A rich, creamy, beautifully savoury custard with a layer of tenderstem broccoli purée, Lincolnshire Poacher cheese & fresh basil.
This dish is an extension of another recipe, Sautéed Tenderstem with Lemon & Nuts, which is layered underneath the custard. For this savoury custards recipe, I sautéed the Tenderstem in butter as I thought its flavours would match better with the other dairy products, but go for another oil if you’d prefer. The touch of garlic and lemon adds dramatically to the flavour of the finished custard, so I wouldn’t recommend omitting it, but feel free to vary the flavourings if you have something else on hand. And don’t forget the nuts – they add further richness and a nice crunchy texture.
Next comes a sprinkle of cheese – I used my new favourite, but if you can’t get hold of it, go for a cheese of your choosing. Pretty much anything would work well here. Something blue, or intensely salty like feta, would alter the flavour of the dish quite dramatically, but would be no worse off for it.
This elegant, decadent, savoury custard utilises cream, milk and a mixture of eggs and egg yolks to maximum oozy effect. Make sure that you keep an eye on your custard towards the end of cooking, as you want it to still be liquid and creamy in the middle, not completely set.
When you remove it from the oven, there definitely needs to be some wobble left in the centre when you shake it gently – it will continue to set as it cools. If you overcook it, it will still taste great – it will just be more like a quiche than a custard. Not silky, velvety, savoury deliciousness.
I’ve made this both as one large custard – great for sharing – and individual custards, just trim the vegetables accordingly. I think deep dishes are better than shallow ones as they allow for a thick layer of custard, but you may have a different preference. Start checking smaller custards after about 15 minutes in the oven, as they will cook a lot quicker.
A rich, creamy, beautifully savoury custard with seasoned Tenderstem broccoli, unpasteurised Lincolnshire Poacher cheese and fresh basil – an elegant, oozy vegetarian dinner.
Savoury custard with tenderstem
- 200 g Tenderstem broccoli
- 2 eggs
- 3 egg yolks
- 250 g double cream
- 250 g milk
- large handful of fresh basil leaves
- 1/2 tsp salt or to taste
- freshly ground black pepper to taste
- 80 g Lincolnshire Poacher or cheese of your choice grated
Heat a large, heavy frying pan until hot, then add the broccoli spears. Cover and steam for 1-2 minutes. Remove the lid, turn the spears and cover again, cooking until just tender.
Line the bottom of a large oven-proof dish (about 30cm round/square) with the broccoli.
Blend all other ingredients except the cheese with a hand blender.
Sprinkle the cheese over the broccoli and pour over the custard. Carefully transfer to the oven and bake, turning regularly so it bakes evenly, until the centre is just set - it should still have plenty of jiggle when you shake it gently - as it will firm up further as it cools. If you overcook it, it will still taste delicious! More like a quiche, it just won't have quite the same creamy, custardy ooze as if it's perfectly cooked.
This post was sponsored by Tenderstem®, but the recipes are my own creations.