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Thursday, October 05, 2006

Real Men (and Women) Do Eat Quiche

Why wouldn't they? Quiche is dreamy. Eggs, cheese, cream and vegetables, bacon, ham, or whatever you feel like putting in. It is pretty easy to play around with quiche. Just take your basic custard, mix in fillings of your choice and bake it in a pie shell. Be it breakfast, lunch or dinner, quiche fits the bill. It's easy to make and tastes just as good hot from the oven as it does served cold.

Tonight's quiche will be spinach and feta in a flaky pie crust. I do realize that this isn't a typical type of post for my blog, but it is technically a custard pie, so that counts as baking in my book. It's just too good of a thing for me to not share!

For the crust:

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup cold butter (you can use shortening if you like, but remember, butter makes it better, or so I say)
3-6 Tablespoons ice water (the range is big, I know, but I find sometimes I need more and sometimes I need less.
-Mix the flour and the salt together in a medium bowl.
-Cut the butter into the flour and salt mixture until it resembles coarse peas (I did use pastry cutter for this today, as my hands seemed a bit hot, but by all means, get your hands into the dough!)
-Drizzle the ice water over the top of the dough (I start with 3 Tbsps and add more if needed) and gently mix the dough until it starts to come together. Form the shaggy dough into a disk and send it off to the refrigerator for about a half hour rest before rolling.

For the Spinach and Feta filling:
One box of frozen chopped leaf spinach (if you want to go to your friendly local organic farmer-emphasis on local- and use fresh spinach from them, by all means do so. If I had been making on Sunday, I may have been using some from the farmer's market).
1 medium yellow onion, diced.
2 or 3 cloves of garlic, minced or pressed.
2 Tbsps butter
2 Tbsps olive oil
8 ounces feta cheese
3 eggs
2 egg yolks
1 cup heavy cream or whole milk
Nutmeg to taste
Salt and Pepper to taste
-Preheat the oven to 375 degrees f.
-Thaw and drain the spinach until it is as dry as you can get it. You may want to chop it up a bit more.
-Heat the olive oil and butter over medium heat until the butter is melted and bubbly.
-Sweat the onion and garlic in the olive oil mixture until the onions are translucent (enjoy the wonderful smell of cooking garlic and onion while doing this. Yum).
-Add the spinach to this mixture and continue cooking until the spinach is heated through. Remove from the heat.
-Crumble the feta into the spinach mixture and mix together. Set aside to cool.
-Pull your pie dough out of the refrigerator and roll out on a lightly floured board to the size you need for your pie tin (I used a 9" pie tin, somewhat shallow).
-Place the rolled out dough in the tin, place the spinach mixture in the dough.
-Beat together the eggs, yolks and cream. Add a little grate of nutmeg, fresh ground pepper and a pinch of salt (you won't need too much salt, as the feta is rather salty). Pour this mixture over the spinach/feta mix in the pie shell and mix together with your hands (or a spoon if you would rather not get your hands into this) carefully so as not to puncture the crust.
-Flute or fold the edges of your pie crust (I like to just fold over the excess crust for a rustic look). You can either bake this now, or chill until you need it.
-Bake for about 45-60 minutes, or until a lovely brown on top and the eggs have set up.
-Serve hot with a salad, serve cold with a salad, serve however you like! Happy Savory Baking!

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Jen said...

Mmmmmm, I can't wait until I make this myself:)))It looks so freaking good:)

Jen the bread freak said...

Thanks, Jenjen :D I hope you like it!