This is a recipe inspired by the brilliantly named Pecorino Ubriaco or ‘drunken pecorino’ cheese traditionally made in the Tuscany region of northern Italy. This hard cheese, aged for six months in grape must (pressed grapes in the advanced stage of the wine production process), adds a complex aroma to baked dishes. And we’ve used it here with some sun-ripened vine tomatoes and Nudo’s basil olive oil to make my favourite ever quiche.
Ingredients for 8 people
300g/10.6oz cherry tomatoes on the vine
250ml/8.45 fl.oz pot of double cream
Handful of basil leaves, torn or shredded plus to garnish.
150g/5.3oz ‘Drunken Pecorino’ (Pecorino Ubriaco) cheese
1 t red wine vinegar
Sea salt and black pepper for seasoning
Ingredients for the pastry
280g/9.8oz of plain flours, plus a bit for dusting
70g/2.5oz cold butter, cubed
70g/2.5oz Nudo basil olive oil or plain extra virgin olive oil
Pinch of salt
First, make the pastry. Put the flour, butter and basil olive oil in a deep bowl, rubbing it together with your fingers until it mixes through and becomes crumbly. Add 8 tablespoons of cold water and mix everything together with your hands until combined in a ball. Dust a flat surface with some flour and using a rolling pin, roll out the pastry into a round a bit bigger than a 25cm baking tin or tart dish. You can also freeze this pastry to use later.
Using the rolling pin, lift and drape the pastry over the tart dish letting the pastry hang over the sides of the dish. Using your fingers, press the dough into the corners of the dish to ensure full coverage of the surface. Cut remaining pastry off the sides of the dish with a sharp knife. Then chill in the fridge for 20 minutes. Heat the oven to 180°C/350°F/Gas mark 5.
Roast the tomatoes on the vine on a low shelf in the oven, pricking each tomato with a needle to avoid bursting. Lightly sprinkle with red wine vinegar and salt before roasting. Whilst the tomatoes are roasting, prick the chilled tart base with a fork and line the dish with a large circle of greaseproof baking paper or tinfoil and fill with baking beans. Blind bake it in the oven for 20 minutes. If you don’t have baking beans, monitor the tart base closely for excessive rising.
While the tart base is baking, in a big bowl beat the eggs. Gradually beat in the cream, followed by the shredded basil and seasoning to taste. Finely grate the ‘drunken pecorino’ cheese. When the tart base is done, also take out the tomatoes.
Sprinkle half the cheese over the base. Remove the tomatoes from the vine and scatter over the base, then pour over the cream mix, taking care to leave some of the tomato tops exposed. Finish off by sprinkling the rest of the cheese over the top of the mixture. Bake for 25 minutes or until golden brown. Leave to cool in the dish before serving with some small, fresh basil leaves as a garnish.