For those of you old enough to remember the satire book from the early 1980’s “Real Men Don’t Eat Quiche” about the stereotypical image our society puts on a man will definitely understand my ‘Real Men Do Eat Quiche’ Quiche title.
Quiche is easy and non stressful and can be simple or complex. That choice is completely yours to decide. I like simple yet hardy quiches and usually can make one from just the left overs or staple ingredients in your pantry or fridge.
Think of a quiche as a ‘One-Stop’ Shop. Everything thrown into a golden pie crust with an egg mixer to glue it all together. Egg can either be the main character or just have a supporting role in this creation.
PIE CRUST – this can be home made or store bought. If you prefer to make your own, there are sometimes recipes for crust right on the flour bag which consists usually of water, butter or shortening and flour. I always add a little sugar to my mixture which I like to think helps keep me so sweet. *smile* I usually do make my own crust but there are times in a working mother’s life that caution is thrown to the wind and a pre-made pie crust is bought at the store. Shame is not a 4 letter word so don’t feel it if you prefer store bought crust. Or, heck, just get a pie crust that’s already baked.
EGGS – usually about 4 eggs
MILK, CREAM or if you don’t have either WATER will work just fine. Just a quarter cup or so to add to the egg mixture. Also a couple of tablespoons of Ricotta cheese mixed in the egg mixture instead of the milk or water works wonders on light fluffy eggs.
MEAT – about 1 cup. I prefer sausage or bacon but you can use left over steak, meatballs, pork chops, chopped ham, grilled chicken, spam…..whatever floats your boat on the meat side of things.
VEGGIE – between half to 1 cup of a mixture of veggies. I like green onions and fresh sliced tomatoes and fresh chopped mushrooms in my quiche but broccoli, spinach, bell pepper, yellow or red onions, asparagus, etc…can be used. Any type of veggie that you like will work great in a quiche.
CHEESE – Glorious Cheese! About 1 cup. Your favorite cheese will do. I prefer Co-Jack or Cheddar with my eggs.
Put your (unbaked) pie crust in the pie plate and poke with a fork generously on the sides and bottom. The holes let the heat escape and the crust won’t bubble up too much. Bake at 450 degrees F for about 10 minutes and then remove from oven. This is pre-baking your pie crust.
Meanwhile, take your meat (if raw) and saute off in a pan until almost done. I usually add my chopped green onion bottoms to this to make the onions sweat a little and soften them up before adding it to the quiche.
In a separate bowl, mix your eggs and milk/cream/water or, if you prefer, the Ricotta cheese together with a little salt and pepper to taste and set aside
Now your crust is ready for layering.
First – I put down a thin layer of cheese at the bottom of the pie crust
Second – I layer the meat and sauteed green onion bottoms
Third – I pour the egg mixture on top of all of this
Fourth – I sprinkle the fresh chopped green onion tops and fresh chopped mushrooms all around
Fifth – I layer a few slices of tomatoes on top covering the whole top of the pie
Sixth – ONLY AFTER THE QUICHE HAS BAKED FOR 20 MINUTES OR SO…I spread the remaining cheese on top
Do not be alarmed or worried if your egg mixture flows over your pie crust. In the end, everything will be fine.
Bake at 350 degrees F for about 20 minutes until outer ring layer is cooked but the middle is still a little jiggly and shakes. At this moment, take the quiche out of the oven and spread the remaining cheese on top (Sixth step). Bake for about 20 minutes more until the cheese is melted and the center of the quiche no longer jiggles. Your quiche may also puff up like a souffle but don’t worry, if you poke it with a knife or fork to check to see if the center is done, this will let the steam out and your quiche will let out a big burp and will now look normal and happy again. Not so bloated anymore!
Once done, take it out of the oven and let it cool for about 10-15 minutes. When it has cooled a bit, serve your manly man a heaping helping of this spectacular egg creation! Can be accompanied with a glorious salad and some fruit for a very well rounded meal.
Variations for the meats and veggies are endless. Just think about what you like and what would marry well together in a dish. Left over steak, asparagus and baked potato would make an excellent quiche the next morning or the next night for dinner.
Don’t be afraid to explore your food. Enjoy !