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Make a Summer Quiche

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Certain foods go with certain seasons, and when the late-summer garden is bursting with cherry tomatoes and sweet peppers, it's time to make a summer quiche.

I like making quiche because it's never the same dish twice. And I love cooking with produce I've grown meself. 

Things I don't grow meself: Pie crusts. I use Pillsbury's rolled up ones, even though I swear they shrink them every time I buy them. Barely enough dough these days to pinch a tiny frill on the edge. Pfft!  Think we wouldn't notice, Doughboy? 

Put a fresh crust in your favorite pie pan, then get to sauteeing! 

Those little sweet snack peppers that come in a zip-top bag at the grocery store are true to seed. I figured that out about four years ago when I took a leap of faith and planted some seeds from the grocery-store ones, and got darling little sweet snack peppers in my own garden. Pick or get a bunch of those and chop 'em up. Add some minced poblanos (green) for heat and color. Sautee up with chopped onions in a blob of butter until they're tender, and the onions are clear.  Set aside.

Toss some chopped Sungold cherry tomatoes in the pan. Cooking with Sungolds is wonderful. They're like little flavor bombs, bringing intense, rich, sunny tomato flavor to anything you make, be it quiche or stir-fry, scrambled eggs or soup. I miss them so when frost comes!

In tonight's quiche, I added tomatillos. One brave tomatillo volunteered this year, right where last year's plants had been. Despite the severe drought, that one plant has made dozens of fruit, small but tangy, which are begging to be used wherever cherry tomatoes are used.

The fabulous tomatillo/Sungold slurry:

With onions and peppers...

Moosh 'em down with a potato masher and you have a flavor-packed base and binder for your quiche. These somewhat unexpected ingredients are what make this a Summer Quiche.  Put that slurry in your unbaked pie crust.

Add generous handfuls of whatever cheese you have on hand. Sharp cheddar, mild cheddar, Monterey Jack, Asiago, even a smattering of feta! All cheese is nom. Mixtures are nom nom.

If you wish, toss in some fresh spinach. It'll cook down in no time. And then you can call it Quiche Florentine, which sounds so nice.

Over it all, pour a mixture of 2 cups whole milk (a bit of half and half won't hurt, either) and 3 eggs, beaten well together.

Salt lightly, and season with fresh herbs from the garden. I like to use rosemary, sage and thyme. Grind a little fresh nutmeg into the liquid pie and slip it into a preheated 400 degree oven. After 10 minutes, cut the heat to 325 and bake until golden brown on top (about 50 min. total).  You're supposed to serve quiche lukewarm. It slices better then. We usually can't wait.

Touch the top lightly, make sure it doesn't jiggle too much. It'll set up more when it's cooler. 

Yep, the clock says 10:22 pm, but I wanted to make a quiche for the morning, to say goodbye to my dear friend Mario Cordoba, who has been visiting from Costa Rica. It's been a joy to have him here taking in all my favorite places, getting to know my little family. If food be love, and I think it is, he's been well-loved.

How lucky can you get, to be able to show your friend your favorite places, to see them through his wondering eyes?

 Ahh, I miss him already. But I'll see him in February, when we take another lucky band of 12 sojourners on a natural history romp through Costa Rica.  That ought to take the bite out of winter.

**Alert readers will notice that there are a bunch of different ingredients going down here, and no spinach in the final quiche. These photos are from several different Summer Quiches. Really, this post is just meant to encourage home cooks to branch out and throw a bunch of different stuff in your quiches, to see what happens. Cherry tomatoes and tomatillos are the only real twist here. Quiches can be anything you want them to be. I've had a Village Bakery quiche stuffed with carrots and beets and it was delicious! So toss the recipe out and have fun!


heh, "flavor bombs" - love that. and I agree, cherry tomatoes of all kinds are great for cooking. anytime I have a bunch that I can't use in time, I freeze them in ziplocs, ready to add to just about anything.

speaking of home-made food, isn't this paw-paw season... hint, hint.

And for those of us who can't (or won't or whatever) eat wheat, a potato crust courtesy of the Mennonite More with Less cookbook; preheat oven to 425. Toss 3 cups coarsely grated raw potato (potato skins are fine or grate in a carrot) with 3 tablespoons vegetable oil. Press into pie pan in crust shape and bake at 425 for 15 minutes or until beginning to brown. Continue with Julie's recipe. Take THAT doughboy!

I'm glad it's not my imagination that the Pillsbury crusts are getting too small- it's been bugging me all summer! Your quiche suggestions look wonderful!

Yummmmm. Bet this would work great with Duck eggs. Why not skip the crust and do a frittata?

Kathy in Delray Beach

Thankyouthankyou to Julie for the OP, and to all the commenters for their ideas. You are encouraging me to branch out, cookingwise. I think I'll try JP's potato crust recipe once I've used up the Pillsburys in my freezer.

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