One of the things I really enjoy making is Quiche. I always have ingredients on hand to make one and it is a good way to use leftover bits of cheese and vegetables--the combinations are endless. Quiche is a good "crossover" dish. It can be served for breakfast, lunch, or a light supper. It's great during the changing of seasons when you are having those, can't figure out what to cook days. It is equally delicious piping hot from the oven or well-chilled for a picnic.
Because I have made so many quiches over the years, I have many memories attached to the dish. I once worked as the Cafe Cook in a very large Natural Foods Store, where one of my jobs was making the quiche of the day. I was given creative license and proceeded to put together many combinations of ingredients. People loved my quiches and I was very proud of them.
A recent memory involves a former coworker, Sam, who had to undergo chemotherapy and radiation and was out of work for about three months. His wife, Judy, also worked with us and I talked (listened) with her, daily, about Sam's progress and setbacks, and her own emotions, as he convalesced.
Prior to Sam's becoming ill, the three of us often had lunch together in the breakroom. One day, Sam became quite fascinated by a slice of leftover quiche I had brought for lunch. He'd never heard of it and asked a lot of questions. He asked for a recipe, which I provided. Over the next several days he would come by my office and ask questions like, "Can you use sausage?" "Can I use a bag of frozen mixed vegetables?" I assured him that yes, he could.
It was not long after that Sam was diagnosed and began treatment. He became very sick and lost an alarming amount of weight very quickly. As Judy and I talked, I suggested things he may be able to eat. One day I made him a quiche. A couple days later, Judy told me that it had been the first thing Sam had been able to eat, enjoy, and keep down, in weeks. I continued to make quiches for him on a regular basis.
I was very humbled, when Sam was well enough to come back to work, and told me, "That quiche was a life saver."
1 pie crust
8 oz. cheese
3 eggs, beaten
1 1/2 cups cream
vegetables and seasonings of choice
Prick the pie crust, all over, with a fork and bake for five minutes only, in a preheated 450 degree oven. Grate or crumble the cheese and place over crust. Placing the cheese directly on the crust forms a barrier and prevents the crust from becoming soggy. Arrange seasoned, sauteed vegetables of your choosing on top of the cheese. Mix together the eggs and cream and pour over the vegetables. Bake at 450 for 10 minutes, then reduce the heat to 350, and continue to bake 15 to 30 minutes, until a knife inserted in the center of the quiche comes out clean.
This quiche is made with cheddar cheese, leftover hash brown potatoes and spinach.
Go ahead and experiment with quiche baking. It's fun. . .broccoli and blue cheese, spinach and feta, apple and white cheddar, carmelized onion, the list goes on.