Food, fuel, and feeling good part 3: Quiche

Ah, quiche! So easy – so good. Protein, some fat, and a great sneaky way to add a bunch of vegetables to your day.

It’s such a simple thing to make a quiche, and you can make several and put them in the freezer for another day. (If you want to eliminate the crust, you can do that – then you are making a “savory custard” which is also fine but it’s not a quiche, dangit.)

Use this recipe to recover after a nice long ride – and entice your bike-riding friends to come join you for après-vélo deliciousness!

Basic Quiche Recipe

Ingredients:

  • eggs (2 large)
  • milk (1 cup)
  • vegetables (about 1-2 cups)
  • cheese, shredded (about 1 cup)

Filling:

1 cup milk or cream to 2 eggs (basic proportions) – for an 8 inch deep dish crust, I suggest 4 eggs and 2 cups milk as a start depending on how many ingredients you are going to use; you can always reserve the remainder and make a savory custard if you run out of pie crust

Vegetables: Spinach ALL DAY LONG. Spinach is the miracle filler of quiche. Potassium, calcium, magnesium, and vitamin A. Plus, it cooks down very well. I used to just chop fresh spinach and add it in uncooked, but I have found that sauteed spinach with some onions and garlic (or garlic powder) provides a little better texture at the finish.

You can also do broccoli, cauliflower, bell peppers, onions, artichokes – for any vegetables that you add, I would suggest you chop them into smaller pieces.

And of course – cheese. Cheese ramps up the fat content pretty quickly, but remember your body still needs fat to help absorb nutrients and contribute to cell growth and repair. So if you’re worried about fat, don’t go nuts on the cheese (or leave it out entirely).

Crust:

I will confess, I just use frozen pie crusts from the grocery store. I still have yet to master a from-scratch crust recipe (feel free to encourage me to try and try again, however!). One tip I will impart is that it is VERY USEFUL to blind bake the frozen crust before you put your quiche filling in it. Blind baking is briefly baking the crust so it can get a head start on being nice and flaky prior to adding the filling. However, you’ll need to make sure you’ve got some pie weights (I use dry beans!) and some parchment paper. See an explanation from The Kitchn here.

If you’re opting for a savory custard as opposed to a quiche, and therefore are eliminating the crust altogether, just make sure to grease your pan VERY WELL before putting the filling in.

Procedure:

I’ll just go ahead and say that a basic spinach, onion and cheese quiche is a go-to for me. I try to limit myself to no more than 3 ingredients (otherwise, the egg filling has nowhere to go and you’ve basically just made a vegetable pie). If you get experimental with deep dishes and your own crust, however, it’s game on.

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees. When heated, add your crust in to blind bake for about 10-15 minutes (this presumes a “pre-cooked” frozen crust) and work on assembly of the rest of the ingredients. Keep a watchful eye on your crust!

Heat saute pan on medium high and add a little olive oil and salt. Chop onions (1/4 to 1/2 cup) and add to pan. Let saute a little bit until glassy. Chop spinach (two handfuls) and add to pan. When spinach is nice and wilted, remove from pan – you can press out excess water with a paper towel if you’d like, but hopefully the salt has helped remove some of that.

Whisk eggs (1 part) and milk (2 parts) together. For a large egg, that is about 2 cups milk to 1 part egg. You can play with the ratios in order to get a more “eggy” quiche if you’d like.

Grate your cheese (Swiss goes really well with spinach!) and have about a cup ready to go.

Remove your crust from the oven and add, in layers, spinach/onion mix, cheese (half cup), and egg. Repeat. If you want to, reserve some cheese to put on top and get crusty and crunchy.

Turn oven down to 350 degrees. Place quiche inside and bake for about 45 minutes. You’ll be able to tell if it’s done if you can stick a knife in the middle and have it come out clean.

Remove finished quiche from oven, let sit, and ENJOY.

Note about small ovens and metal trays: sometimes, the tray on the bottom in the oven will have heat reflected back from the tray on top if the racks are too close. Rotate your quiches as needed!

More food fun on the blog entries about farro and kale.

 

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