DUBAI: The Arab world is gearing up to celebrate the coronation of King Charles III and Queen Camilla, with regional chefs preparing an Arab twist on the couple’s chosen coronation dish, a special quiche.
The dish, featuring spinach, broad beans and tarragon, is a nod to coronation chicken, a curry and mayonnaise-based dish which was invented for the 1953 coronation of Charles’ mother Queen Elizabeth II that is still enjoyed today.
Coronation chicken, created by Cordon Bleu-trained chef Rosemary Hume, was named the “poulet Reine Elizabeth” and consists of cold poached chicken in a sauce made from red wine, mayonnaise, whipped cream, apricot purée and a touch of curry powder.
By the 1980s, an easier to make version of coronation chicken salad had become ubiquitous in Britain, found in ready-made sandwiches at many local stores across the country.
Now, cold shredded chicken, mayonnaise and a healthy heaping of curry powder are considered a staple form of the dish, while some recipes call for raisins and mango chutney for a sweet kick.
As the UK celebrates the new monarch, the royal household is hoping the “coronation quiche” will prove equally popular 70 years on.
Quiche was chosen because it is considered a good “sharing” dish to take to a street party and can be served hot or cold.
The palace said on its website that the dish had been chosen personally by Charles and Camilla, and was “easily adapted to different tastes and preferences,” presenting it as a recipe for hundreds of community lunches planned across the country to mark the May 6 event.
“A deep quiche with a crisp, light pastry case and delicate flavors of spinach, broad beans and fresh tarragon. Eat hot or cold with a green salad and boiled new potatoes,” said the recipe on the royal family’s website, which accompanied a video clip featuring a royal chef preparing the dish.
Lebanese chef Marwan Sardouk, with culinary experience spanning 15 years, and chef Shelton D’Souza, of Dubai’s FireLake Grill House at the Radisson Blu hotel, have added an Arab twist to the dish.
Sardouk’s recipe, created for TV channel Fatafeat, is good for two to four people.
Sardouk’s quiche recipe:
For the Mornay sauce:
1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
2/3 cup whole milk
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup shredded Gruyere Cheese
For the Croque madam:
300 grams quiche dough
2 tablespoon butter, softened
2 teaspoon whole grain mustard
1/2 cups mornay sauce
6 thin slices turkey ham
1 cup shredded gruyere, divided
For the egg:
1 tablespoon butter
2 large eggs
Salt flakes, for sprinkling
Freshly ground black pepper, as needed
For the Mornay:
Make the roux and add milk and salt and pepper as flavoring.
For the Croque madame:
Roll the dough on a flat surface with a rolling pin.
Shape it into a tall pie using a round ring mold.
Place all the filling and cover it with the remaining dough.
Bake it at 180 C for 15 to 20 minutes or until the dough is golden and comes loose from the ring mold.
Fry the eggs in a frying pan with butter and season it with salt.
Set aside the fried eggs for later use.
To finish off, place the egg on top of the pastry and garnish as you like.
D’Souza’s quiche recipe
This recipe serves four people.
For the quiche mix:
300 grams spinach (cleaned, blanched and chopped)
25 grams of white onion (chopped)
5 grams of garlic (finely chopped)
140 grams of akawi cheese (grated)
30 grams of gruyere cheese
For the quiche pastry:
200 grams of flour T55
200 grams of butter
1 pasteurized egg white
30 grams of dry zaatar powder
10 grams of salt
25 milliliters of water
For the quiche custard:
200 milliliters of milk
100 milliliters of cooking cream
2 grams of cinnamon powder
5 grams of salt
2 grams of black pepper
Preheat the oven to 162 C. Prepare the quiche dough then mix all the ingredients together and make a dough. Roll out the dough into a pie mold. Line a pie dish with short crust pastry, cutting off any excess and pinching the edges. Prick the bottom and all over the side. Bake the crust for 10 to 12 minutes until it becomes light brown.
In a medium frying pan, melt the butter over medium heat. Saute the garlic and onion in butter for about five minutes until lightly browned.
Add the blanched and chopped spinach. Taste the mixture then wait for it to cool before adding the akawi cheese. Season the mixture with salt and pepper. Spoon the mixture into the prepared pastry-lined dish.
In a medium bowl, whisk the custard mix. Season it with salt and pepper. Pour it into the pastry base, allowing the egg mixture to thoroughly combine with the spinach mixture.
Bake in a preheated oven for 15 minutes. Bake an additional 35 minutes, until it is set in the center. Allow the dish to cool for five minutes before serving.