Dilly Good – Re-Mix

I may be a bit of infrequent blogger these days but I am predictable. (At least when it comes to quiche!)

As is often the case, I found myself once again with too much fresh dill in the fridge. And of course I always have Feta cheese on hands. So naturally I made a quiche. Much like my “Dilly Good” quiche from July 2016, I used potatoes in the base instead of a crust, making it more like a Tortilla Espanola” or a Spanish style potato omelet. (and gluten free) Which means I took my time slowly precooking the thin slices of potatoes in oil, over not too high a heat so they soften but not brown too much. And the same for the onions. Short of that I basically whisk up some eggs and dairy of choice (I like whole milk or half/half) and layer it all into a pie dish. Cook as you would any quiche – 40-45 mins at 400 degrees. Best served after it has cooled a bit or even room temperature.

Take a look at my process in pictures:

 

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Dilly Good

I think fresh dill is one of the most under-used, under-appreciated herbs. So every chance I get to use it, I do. And not just for pickles! or for Spanakopita!

This time I decided to use it in a quiche! My favorite way to use up stuff anyway is to pair it with eggs.

I decided instead of a crust to make more of  “Tortilla Espanola” or a Spanish style potato omelet. You typically start these on the stove-top and finish them in the oven, but feeling a little lazy I decided to do the whole thing in the oven. So I got out the trusty glass pie dish that I use for everything and layered the ingredients into it. I made sure to slice each ingredient thin so it would cook easily in the time I typically bake my quiches (about 45 mins at 425 degrees)

The layers of ingredients  – inspired by fresh dill – took on a decidedly “Eastern European” inspiration with red onion, potato and dill. A couple tablespoons of sour cream added to my standard quiche mix made everything extra light and fluffy! A little grated parmesan cheese on top never hurt anything !

 

 

 

Spring Day 23: (Actual Warm Weather & Quiche)

spring quichePredictions of 60 degrees today in Boston!

Other than snow farms and parking lots, the snow is just about gone. A quick inspection of the yard showed that yes, maybe all the plants survived – although I have my doubts about the Hydrangea. Of course now the spring yard work and clean up must start in earnest and that means busy weekends.

I still think quiche is the best way to use up odds and ends from the fridge and it gives you something that can be available as a snack or meal in between filling the yard waste bags.

This one had asparagus, sweet red bell pepper, spring onions, and  feta cheese of course. A real spring classic. As always I try to use whole milk or better yet “half and half” for a rich, moist quiche. You can see a couple recipes here and here!

Superfecta Of Summer

Corn and tomatoes are one of  my favorite parings and I have written about them before….here and here.

This time I paired them in a quiche. Easy and summer-y this quiche tastes like a fancy brunch dish and is so light that you feel almost like you are eating healthy! (never mind the eggs, cream and cheese in the mix!)

summer quiche The key was the fresh corn – sweet and in season now –  I carved it raw off the cob making sure to include all the “milk” into the bowl as well. I had never used a soft, fresh cheese like goat cheese before, in a quiche, but I had some already crumbled in the fridge and decided to throw it in. The fresh basil and cherry tomatoes cut in half rounded out this trifecta (or perhaps its a “superfecta?”) of ingredients. The moist goat cheese added a bit of luscious-ness to it.The quiche is rich but not heavy.

Production Notes

I just use a store-bought crust that I blind bake for 10-15 minutes so the crust will be crisp and not soggy. I also firmly believe that glass pie dishes get the best result with crust. For the liquids I simply start with 6 whole eggs and about a cup of dairy – milk cream or even half and half. I fill the cooled crust with the filling of the choice and carefully pour the liquid mix over it all. Be careful not to pour to fast as sometimes the liquid doesn’t get into the nooks and crannies as fast as it should and you can easily spill over the edges! S & p to taste.

Bake in a preheated 375 degree oven until set in middle. Cool a bit before slicing.

quiche ingredients

The “superfecta” of summer ingredients!

 

A Round Dough In A Square Pan

dough

That’s what happens when you are coming off apple pie season and you realize your good pie/quiche dish has been lent out. (With a pie in it of course!)

I had no choice but to make it work…so into my glass brownie pan it went!

If you know me at all – you know that I will throw just about anything into a quiche. And I know for a fact that “real men do eat quiche!” Just ask my husband!

I have posted about quiche before, here and here, and I consider it the perfect vehicle for small bits of things: leftovers, extra parts, frozen things, you name it! So this time around I had some sweet peppers and onions to use up. Of course I always have a ham steak in the freezer if not in the fridge. Cheese of some sort is mandatory.

This is the latest version…I like to think of it as a Spicy Ham Italian Quiche – kinda like a “sandwich-as-quiche!”

Production Notes:

I poke the crust liberally with a fork and prebake the crust in a 400 degree oven for about 8 mins or so. This keeps the crust from getting soggy.

I usually use a filling ratio that is heavy on the eggs but has a little dairy (half and half or whole milk) in it too. I usually start with 6 eggs to about 1/4- 1/2 cup dairy but this dish was big, so 10 eggs plus enough dairy to make 2 cups of liquid, for this one.

I cover it loosely with foil for the first 20 mins of baking time so the crust edges wouldn’t get too dark. Uncover for the last 15-20 mins. Total baking time is around 40 mins but basically as soon as it is firm but tender – take it out!

Let it cool a bit before slicing – it will slice better!

Don’t forget to season! Salt, Pepper, Dried Oregano, Hot Chili flakes – whatever floats your boat!

And no I don’t make my own crust – mine comes rolled in a red box – get crazy and make your own if you want.

Add extra cheese about 10 mins before the end for extra yummy presentation!

ready to eat

“Box Stew” Quiche

Remember this?

That was one the items from Aunt Barbara’s clever “cabinet stew in a box”  Christmas gift to me.

Well after I made a toasted tortilla snack with some, the rest went to the fridge to await another use.

Quiche.

I just love using up random ingredients in quiche.

You can almost put anything in them – they are quick, easy and can be eaten all week as a snack, lunch or dinner. That is what we do in my house.

So this quiche has some cubed cooked ham, the rest of that jar of corn salsa and some shredded Monterey Jack Cheese.

You could easily leave out the ham to make this vegetarian.

You could also add a few black beans to make it more filling.

Ironically my friend over at The Perfect Pantry just posted about Quiche Lorraine. There is actually some interesting history behind that traditional form of quiche.

In the meantime….enjoy my southwest version of this classic.

“Quiche-eaters”

“Real men don’t eat quiche!”

Remember that book? It was written by Bruce Feirstein in 1982. It was a “tongue-in-cheek” book about men; satirizing their masculinity. If you were a “quiche-eater” you were a wimpy over-anxious trend chaser!

Thankfully the 80’s are over and my very masculine husband can enjoy his quiche without judgment. I think men have really come into their own in the kitchen – thanks to Emeril, Guy and Bobby. Men can not only eat the quiche – they can cook it! My husband has yet to make it, but someday soon maybe. I make it for him at least once a month.

I can remember my first quiche. Back in the 80’s I followed the recipe from Jeff Smith’s The Frugal Gourmet. Published in 1984, he gives several recipes for quiche. Clearly he was not afraid to eat quiche.

These days I can make a quiche without following a recipe. Of course I take a little help from the grocery store with a pre-made rolled pie crust from the refrigerated section. You know those ones in the red box. Trust me – no one will know.

What do I put in my quiche?

Just about everything! Much like the “use it up” macaroni and cheese; I put in whatever happens to be in my fridge at the time. Leftover grilled sausage from last night’s dinner? Why not. Half a jar of artichoke hearts that have been hanging around my fridge for weeks? Sure. You know that 1/2 pound of sliced Havarti cheese that seemed like a good idea at the time but is really just too much for a couple sandwiches? Let’s put it in!

I will put just about anything in a quiche but I do have a few guidelines.  I don’t put any raw meats in – just leftover cooked or processed deli/dried/smoked etc. I have yet to put any leftover cooked pasta in a quiche – but maybe that would be good? I have never put lettuce in one. Yet.

What about that can of niblet corn that has been hanging around?

In our house, quiche serves as a quick breakfast, brown-bag lunch or even just a snack.  It is something I make, cool and put in the refrigerator for “help-your-selfers.” (Mostly of the husband variety.)

However, making a quiche like this is not for the faint-of-heart. Or for dieters. You have to be adventurous and willing to try new a combination. It is a great way to use the odds and ends of the refrigerator or pantry.

I like to call it “cabinet stew quiche!”

Basic quiche recipe:

1 pre-made pie crust rolled out and placed into a 9″ glass pie dish. (not deep dish)

6 -7 large eggs

1 to 1- 1/2 cups milk (I prefer whole but any will do)

salt and pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. “dock” the bottom of the crust with a fork. (make little holes.) Bake empty crust for 9-10 mins it should just start looking not raw but not be actually browning. I feel this step ensures the crust will definitely be cooked and not soggy. Remove crust from oven and leave oven on. Let crust cool a few minutes while you prepare filling. Thoroughly mix the eggs and milk together, add the salt and pepper. I use an extra egg if the eggs are running a little small. I like an eggy quiche.

Now for the fun part!

add what you have…here is what I put in last night’s quiche….

1 small head of broccoli – washed, trimmed and cut into bite size chunks. (Nope, I didn’t blanch it first)

Half of a red onion sliced thin

1 small container of fat free feta cheese

Half of a small plastic container of sundried tomatoes, chopped. (These happen to be dried and not packed in oil but if they were, drain them first )

A healthy dose of dried oregano because it just seem to fit the ingredients.

Place all the chopped ingredients in the partially baked crust. Pour the egg/milk mixture over. Go slow because it is easy to overflow. I bring it right to the top.  The crust is thin and sometimes it slips/shrinks down the sides when I pre-bake; that is okay with me. If the egg mix won’t all fit – save the rest for scrambled eggs tomorrow morning.

Bake on a sheet pan if you have an unsteady hand getting it into the oven, otherwise go right to the middle rack.

Bake at least 30 mins and check middle for done-ness. Should be springy. Insert a knife and peek for liquid. Continue to bake if needed in 10 minute intervals until done. Serve warm or room temperature or re-heated out of the refrigerator.