Tuesday, 9 April 2013

The Shortest of Shortcrust

Whilst at The Cake and Bake Show on Sunday, we garnered quite a few money off vouchers. Amongst them was a free pack voucher for Trex, a dairy free alternative to butter, for use in cooking.

I haven’t used Trex for years. In fact, I wasn’t aware that they still made it. I obviously never get far enough along the butter/marg shelf in the supermarket. Along with the voucher, I was given a conversion chart because you need to use 20% less Trex than other fats. Plus a calendar containing some mouth-watering dishes.

The company’s website also told me that the product is:
  • A non hydrogenated vegetable fat.
  • There are no e-numbers, colours or preservatives.
  • It is lower in saturated fat than butter.
  • It has been around since the 1930’s. So has a good heritage.
All positive news in my book but how would it taste? I decided to give it a go and headed off to the shop to get my free 500g pack. As the weather is trying its best to perk up, I thought I’d make a dish that gives a nod towards Summer. Quiche. A cheese, smoked bacon and broccoli quiche.

I’m pretty good at pastry. I have been baking since I was tiny after all. This pastry though was the lightest and shortest I have made in a long time and it tasted good too. I’m definitely a Trex convert and will give it a go in some cake baking too. Even better, I have another voucher for a free block. Win, win.


170g (6oz) plain flour
Pinch of salt
70g (2¼oz) Trex (as opposed to 85g/3oz of butter/marg/lard)
30ml/2 tblsp of cold water to mix

1 small onion, sliced
2 rashers, smoked streaky bacon
1 small head of broccoli, cut into small florets
3 medium eggs
150ml/¼ pt milk
Salt and pepper
100g/4oz cheese, grated


Preheat the oven to 190°C/375°F/Gas Mark 5. Grease a 23cm/9” flan dish.
.Sift the flour into a bowl and mix in a pinch of salt. Gently rub in the Trex until a breadcrumb texture is achieved. Use a knife to mix through the cold water until you a form a dough. Add the water a bit at a time as you may not need it all or you may need a little extra. Knead the dough together gently with your hands. Try not to overwork the dough as this will make it tough. Turn the ball of dough out onto a floured surface and roll out to fit the flan dish. Lay the pastry in the dish and trim. Be aware that you pastry will shrink slightly during blind baking so don’t trim too close to the edge of the dish. Ensure there are no holes in the pastry, especially with a loose bottomed flan dish because you will end up with your flan mix seeping out. Any holes can be patched with spare pastry. Line the pastry with greaseproof paper and pour in baking beans. I haven’t got any so I use uncooked rice. Blind bake for 15 minutes.

Whilst the pastry is cooking gently fry the bacon and onion and blanch the broccoli. Drain the broccoli and put to one side. Grate the cheese. Lightly beat the eggs and milk. Season. Take the flan dish out of the oven and put the bacon, onions and broccoli into the pastry case and spread out. Carefully pour the egg and milk mixture in and sprinkle over the cheese.

Put the flan back in the oven and cook for approx 40 minutes until golden and firm.

The finished Quiche


  1. You have tempted me towards the joys of trex, I may attempt trex pie this weekend.....

  2. I would Adam. You won't be disappointed. Maybe bake a bun for the unicorn too.