beetroot & feta flan (v)

serves 12; ready in 1hr 10 mins plus chilling

Cheese is an ideal partner for sweet beetroot. Serve hot or cold - it'll keep for 2 days in the fridge

175g vacuum-packed beetroot, roughly chopped
Flour, for rolling out
400g Jus-Rol Shortcrust pastry
2 large eggs
200g reduced-fat crème fraîche
1tsp chopped thyme leaves, plus sprigs to garnish
100g Red Leicester cheese, grated
50g feta or Lancashire cheese, crumbled
Spinach leaves, to garnish

Preheat the oven to 200C/180C Fan/Gas 6. Put the beetroot in a greased roasting tin and cook for 15 mins. Mash lightly.

On a floured surface, roll out the pastry and use to line a 23cm flan tin. Prick the pastry base with a fork.

Cover with a sheet of baking paper, then fill with ceramic baking beans or dry rice. Bake for 10 mins. Remove the beans, or rice, and bake for another 5 mins.

Turn the oven down to 180C/160C Fan/Gas 4. Beat together the eggs and crème fraîche. Season with pepper and add the thyme leaves and 75g of the grated Red Leicester. Pour into the pastry case.

Top with the beetroot, the remaining Red Leicester and the feta, or Lancashire, cheese. Bake in the oven for 25 mins, or until just set. Garnish with the thyme sprigs and spinach.

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