Sunday, May 6, 2012

Broccoli, Leek & Blue Cheese Pie

Broccoli, Leek & Blue Cheese Pie 1

I've got to confess that I've been feeling a little despondent about blogging lately.  Not that I've been short on inspiration for things to cook, but now that we're in the very depths of autumn (in fact, getting perilously close to winter, even) I'm often finding these days that, by the time I get a dish finished and onto the plate, night has fallen.  Those of you who are also bloggers know that this means just one thing - the dreaded "orange" photos.  And so it is that several dishes I've made for you over the last couple of weeks have been rendered completely unblogworthy by the lack of a decent photograph.

One thing I'm not despondent about, however, is this Broccoli, Leek & Blue Cheese Pie - it's so good, in fact, that I've made it twice in the last week.  This is something of a rarity for me, but I can tell you that it won't end there - I will definitely be making this one again and again.

This pie is both easy and economical to make, tastes great both hot and cold, and reheats well should you be lucky enough to have leftovers.  In actual fact the leek filling tastes so good that I ate half of it before it even made it into the pie, and I imagine it could be used as a great accompaniment to some grilled or roasted chicken.

This dish comes from one of my favourite cookbooks, "Plenty: Vibrant Recipes from London's Ottolenghi" by Yotam Ottolenghi, and is my contribution this week to Cookbook Sundays.

Plenty: Vibrant Recipes from London's Ottolenghi

Yes I know I have already shared several recipes with you from this book, and it would have been good to introduce you to another one of my books, but a couple of things I had planned for you fell foul to the previously mentioned unblogworthy photographs - obviously I will just have to have another go at some of those things.  In the meantime, hope you'll have a go at this pie, and try to imagine that it tastes a whole lot better than these photos might suggest.

Broccoli, Leek & Blue Cheese Pie
Adapted from a recipe by Yotam Ottolenghi
Serves 4
Click here for a printable copy of this recipe

1x packet puff pastry
1x head broccoli, cut into florets
1 tablespoon butter
2x leeks, thinly sliced
2/3 cup cream
handful of fresh tarragon leaves, chopped
1-1/2 tablespoons wholegrain mustard
flaky sea salt
black pepper
100g (3.5 oz) blue cheese
1x egg, lightly beaten

Preheat the oven to 200 degrees C (400 degrees F).  Lightly grease a 23cm (9 inch) tart dish (a loose-bottomed tin is ideal if you have one).

Roll out two-thirds of the pastry into a circle that is large enough to line the base of the tart dish.  Prick the pastry base all over with a fork, then line with parchment paper and fill with baking beans.  Bake blind for about 15 minutes, then remove the paper and baking beans and bake for a further 5 minutes.  Set aside to cool.

Meanwhile, prepare the filling.  Bring a medium sized pan of water to the boil, add the broccoli and allow to cook for about two minutes, until just tender.  Drain, refresh immediately in cold water, then drain again and leave to dry.

Melt the butter in a saute pan over gentle heat, add the leaks and saute until soft, but not browned - about 10 minutes.  Add the cream, tarragon, mustard, salt and pepper.  Stir to combine everything and remove from the heat.  Taste and adjust seasoning as necessary.

Spread the leek mixture over the base of the pastry case, and strew the broccoli over the top, nestling the florets into the leek mixture.  Crumble over the blue cheese.

Broccoli, Leek & Blue Cheese Pie 2

Brush the rim of the pastry case with the beaten egg.  Roll out the remaining pastry for a lid and place over the filling, pressing firmly around the edges to attach the lid to the base.  Tuck in or trim off any excess.

Brush the lid with the beaten egg, prick in a few places with a fork to allow steam to escape, and bake in the preheated oven for 30 minutes or until golden brown.

Remove from oven and allow to stand for a few minutes before serving.

I'm sharing this pie this week at Cookbook Sundays, where my friends are delving into their cookbook collections and sharing some of their recipes.  Do stop by to see what they're cooking - you might even feel inspired to link up a recipe from one of your own cookbooks.



  1. Oh My! this looks delicious!

  2. Oh yum! This has been on my list to give a try (love this cookbook too) moving further up the list now.

    1. Jacky, I think everyone who owns this book loves it - am yet to come across anyone who is disappointed in it. This recipe is definitely worth moving a notch or two up the list - hope you give it a try :-)

  3. Sue, this looks extra yummy! I don't have this book, but keep collecting good recipes from it, so may have to put it on my xmas list.

    Sorry I haven't been posting to Cookbooks Sunday of late. Will get back with the program in June, when things start to return to "normal" around here.

    1. Kaye, this book would definitely be high on my list of "essential" cookbooks - definitely put it on your Xmas list.

      No problem about not posting - look forward to you joining in again when life settles down again for you.


  4. The dreaded orange photos were standard my first two years of blogging, I think! I know exactly what you mean. Although I have no shame and posted hideous photos anyway!

    My husband would love this--he's big on blue cheese. I would love this--I'm big on puff pastry.

  5. Yummy pie, I am going to make a pie too tonight! Pity that i don't have leeks!


  6. I love pie! And I'm loving your leek, broccoli and blue cheese pie Sue. Going to have to add it to my pie repertoire for the coming colder nights! And yes - totally get what you're talking about, that awful 'orange' hue photos take when it starts to darken. The artificial lights in the kitchen can only help so much and I haven't gotten around investing in 'professional' lighting. Probably need to look into that at some stage! :-)

  7. Ah yes, the dreaded winter light and no time to photograph. I have to save mine till weekend, we had a lovely piece of grilled salmon this evening with a sorrel and broad bean sauce but there is no way I could photograph it, mind you I do have some lighting I need to dig out again. The pie looks great and the warm glow is perfect for it.

  8. Your broccoli, leek and blue cheese pie looks wonderful! What a lovely recipe. I always dread losing the light for photographs, and we've had such a dismal spring here with hardly any sunshine that I'm experiencing the same thing as you are. My son is a photographer and he is trying to persuade me to buy a light box. I may well give in as apparently the sun is not going to visit us properly now until at least June!

  9. Looks absolutely amazing, I will definitely have to try this recipe. I'm following your blog now, looking forward to sharing with you!

  10. Yum, love this pie. This post has inspired me to make it once again. A simple flash you can bounce off a white wall will make a huge difference to the orange glow.

  11. Goodness what an amazing pie....and Sue, I am yet to even come close to tiring of anything Ottolenghi :) Know what you mean about the light...means for a lot of weekend cooking & photographing :)


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