Saturday, January 22, 2011

Quiche Me!

Let's start with first up out of the oven today and work from there.  Crab Quiche.  Funny story first.  As a senior in high school, my brother Steve was a Junior---we were both in Ms. McMullen's Foods Class.  Mom bought us aprons, mine said "Quiche and Fondue Me", his said "Bar-be-Cutie"....needless to say we were a hit.  My claim to fame -or not- is this, the only swat I got in school was from "disrespect" in her class where I was arguing with my brother and I informed the teacher that her concerns were, "none of her business"....wrong thing to say to a high school teacher at the end of the day!  The good news is that Mr. Hill, the Asst. Principal knew I was a good kid and gave me a tiny "tap" with the paddle...I was already a blubbering, sloppy mess before the wood hit the bottom.

Quiche is a lovely and easy thing to throw together and put on the table in 1 hour.  Fill the shell with ingredients you love and call it good.  Today, I am using leftovers in my fridge and ingredients that are readily available from the pantry.

9" pie shell (I make a lousy crust.....please make your own if you can)
1 C crab or any meat or veg you want
 *Hint:  Precooked sliced bacon is good here on the bottom
1 cup sliced mushrooms, sauteed to soft and drained---herbs to saute with mushrooms are:  Basil, Sweet Marjoram, Hot and Spicy Oregano (these came from my garden)
2 TBSP Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1/2 cup Red Onion, diced fine
1 cup artichoke crowns, drained and rinsed, diced
1 cup grated cheese (your choice) I used what was left over in the fridge and needed to be used up...a combination of goat cheese and Gouda.  Swiss works really well (but I've always used Baby Swiss) as does Havarti (especially Havarti dill with a fish ingredient).  Nothing wrong with Cheddar or Montery Jack either--it's up to you....depending on the ingredients, I've used gorgonzola, feta, Jarlsberg and more.

Wet Ingredients to pour over your other ingredients already sitting in the crust:
4 eggs, slightly beaten
2 cups half and half
sea salt and pepper to taste
Paprika to color---about 1 tsp.
1 tsp. thyme-crush between your fingers

Line your pie dish with a crust.  Next layer the ingredients that are given.  Stir together the wet ingredients and pour over the top of your quiche.  I like to gently massage the wet into the dry, just briefly before putting into the oven.

Bake at 425 for 15 minutes.  Turn the oven down to 300 and bake for another 40 minutes or until the center comes out clean when penetrated with a sharp knife.  Allow to cool for 10 minutes before cutting to serve, or cool completely, then cover in foil or freeze to reheat later.

P.S.  My absolute favorite is simple......Spinach and Guyerre Cheese with a tiny bit of bacon on the bottom.  Use left-over chicken and green chile, sun dried tomatoes and basil, anything goes with quiche.

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