Jeanette - Off The Cuff

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Blogger at: http://offthecuffhome.blogspot.com and http://offthecuffcooking.blogspot.com -- My name is Jeanette, and I was born in Sweden, but unlike the famous Muppet, I am not a professional Swedish Chef. I actually studied design and photography. I also was a freelance indie-rock critic for several magazines from 1998-2005, and had an in-house PR company for a while. Cooking is in my DNA--my dad's brother was a chef and their father was a pastry chef, my mom's mother was a caterer, who published a cookbook of traditional Finnish breads and pastries when she was 92. Everyone else in my family loves to cook, and we're not afraid to experiment. I have a yen for interior design and remodeling.

Friday, July 30, 2010

QUICHE

Finished Quiche I love Quiche, and usually have good success in making it… this one turned out a little bland, but I think it was mostly just lack of salt, so aside from that, it was fine.  Also, whole wheat flour does not make the best pastry crust, I’ve discovered, since it’s not very elastic and hard to roll out without it just crumbling & cracking.  So use at least half of the portion of white flour, if not all.

 

 

INGREDIENTS:

Crust, prior to bakingPie Crust:
1 stick of salted butter
2 cups flour
2-3 tablespoons ice cold water

Soften butter at room temp for easiest crust making.  Mix flour and butter together until distributed evenly.  Sprinkle in ice cold water, one tablespoon at a time, pausing to knead together in between.  Add more water as needed, but the dough should be firm, and fairly dry to the touch, not squishy or sticky like a pizza dough.

Chill the dough for about an hour (another step I lazily and hastily omitted last night for lack of time) which helps it be more malleable.  After it’s chilled, roll it out on a flat surface into a round, and place it in a pie plate.  Crimp the edges if you are a fancy-pants sort of pie crust maker.  Me, I was just hungry and wanted my dinner, so I didn’t bother with a decorative edges last night, plus as I said earlier, the whole wheat flour wasn’t working very well.  I basically had to just press it into the pie plate and try to make it hold together… It almost reminded me of a graham cracker crust in texture.

Use a fork to poke lots of holes in the bottom so it doesn’t bubble up too much.

Bake the pie crust at 400 for ten minutes, and then take it back out.  If you have fancy fluted edges to your crust, take a long strip of aluminum foil to cover the edges with it so they don’t burn during the second bake-time when you fill the pie.

Quiche Mixture:
6 eggs
Approx. 1/2 cup of milk and/or cream
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp fresh ground pepper
1 cup of shredded cheese (I’ve tried various cheeses, and they all have their own benefits.  Cheddar, feta, gruyere, Swiss, and last night I used Mozzarella)

Mix all together in a large bowl with a whisk

Vegetable or meat fillings:
Any number of veggies work well, but be aware that most veggies are high in water content and can make the quiche very soggy.  I usually solve this by sautéing my veggies in a skillet first, to let some of the water evaporate out.  Options on the veggies are bell peppers, chives, green onions, mushrooms, onions, broccoli, carrots, cauliflower, asparagus… chop them up finely, and sauté them for five to ten minutes in a little bit of oil until they’ve “reduced” a bit. Add veggies and meats

Meats that are good in quiche could be anything from smoked salmon, bacon, black forest ham from the deli, sliced into thin shavings & slivered, or even shrimp (although I’m not a huge shellfish fan…) Just making suggestions.

In my quiche last night, I used up the rest of the green onions and bell pepper from my Pad Thai the other day, as well as sautéed baby spinach leaves.  I didn’t have meat, but bacon would have been really good with this combo.  

Scoop the veggie and/or meat fillings into the pre-baked pie crust, and then pour over the egg mixture.  Bake for about 25-30 minutes at 400. Pour on cheese & egg mixture

Half the fun of a quiche is just experimenting with combinations, of cheese, meats and veggies.  It’s really just a glorified omelet in a crust, but it’s so good, and can be as good for dinner, breakfast or lunch.

 

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