- 300g chicory leaves, chopped (approximately 1 bunch)
- 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil, plus extra to brush
- 4 cloves garlic, crushed
- 1 bunch English spinach, chopped
- 1 small bunch each parsley and chives roughly chopped
- ½ cup panko breadcrumbs
- 1 tsp finely grated lemon zest
- 6 eggs, loosely beaten
- 200g aged cheddar, crumbled
For the olive oil pastry:
- 1 ½ cups plain flour
- 1 tsp sea salt flakes
- 2 tbsp good quality extra virgin olive oil
- For the pastry, place the flour and salt in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a dough hook. Add the olive oil and 100ml water, and with the mixer on medium speed gradually pour into the flour. Knead for 5 minutes or until the dough is smooth. Divide in half, cover with a clean, damp tea towel and set aside to rest for 1 hour.
- Meanwhile, place the chicory in a colander. Pour over boiling water. Set aside for a few minutes to cool and squeeze out excess water. Heat oil in a large non-stick frying pan. Add the garlic and cook for 3 minutes. Add the chicory and spinach and cook for 2-3 minutes, until wilted. Add the herbs, breadcrumbs, lemon zest and season.
- Preheat oven to 240°C (220°C fan forced). Lightly grease a 25cm (base measurement) pie tin (or fluted tart tin). Roll the dough to 40cm circle. Line the base, stretching and pressing the dough into sides, leaving the excess to overhang. Fill with chicory, eggs and dot with cheese. Fold the pastry over the filling and brush with oil. Place on a baking tray and bake for 40 minutes, or until golden and pastry is cooked.
Green leaf chicory – also known as chicory greens and cicoria – is a member of the dandelion family. If you’re using it raw, be sure to use small, tender leaves. Eaten raw, it has a bitter, spicy finish but once blanched, the bitterness mellows out, leaving a robust spinach-like flavour. Chicory is a good source of vitamin K and promotes digestive health.