Allez, Cuisine! Spinach Quiche

Claire Littlefield and Emma Ellis

We know that making quiche seems like a daunting task. It’s French. It involves baking something that isn’t a cookie. It’s got that weird “q” thing going on. As a result, many people have only eaten quiche in fancy caf?es or in mini, store-bought form. And it’s really a shame, because there is nothing more lusciously cheesy and satisfying than homemade quiche.

The truth is, the process of making quiche is as simple and straightforward as its ingredients list.  It’s really just eggs and dairy, whipped together and thrown in the oven. The high fat content definitely makes this a recipe that should be used with caution, but it’s a great dish to have in your arsenal for special occasions. It can be eaten for just about any meal and, since it reheats well in the microwave, you can make it in advance or treat yourself to leftovers.

Once you master this basic recipe, you can alter it to include more of your favorite flavors; tomato, basil, caramelized onions, goat cheese, fresh jalape?nos, asparagus and mushrooms could all be excellent additions.

Servings: 6-7

Ingredients:

1 deep-dish piecrust

1 bag of spinach

1 1/2 cups half and half

6 oz semi-hard cheese (swiss and cheddar work best)

3 eggs

1/2 tsp salt

Pepper

Nutmeg (optional, but highly recommended

Process:

1.  Preheat your oven to 375?.

2.  Microwave the spinach for a few minutes until it begins to wilt, then pat it down with a dry paper towel to remove some of the excess moisture. This step is important because it will prevent the spinach from rising to the top of the quiche as it bakes and becoming dry and overdone.

3.  Next, grate your cheese and put it in the bottom of your piecrust.

4.  Then blend the eggs, half and half, salt, a few grinds of pepper and a dash of nutmeg until combined. If you don’t have a blender, a bowl and a whisk (or even a bowl and a fork) will work just as well, although it will take a little longer.

5.  Pour the egg mixture into the piecrust.

6.  Add the spinach. Use your finger or a fork to break up any clumps of spinach so it spreads out evenly over the top of the quiche.

7.  You’re ready to put it in the oven! You may want to put the pie tin on top of a cookie sheet in case you spill any liquid during the move or it overflows during the baking process.

8.  Bake for about 45-55 minutes, or until the top is golden brown and puffed all the way across.

Bonus Points:

First, the simple one: 1/4 pound of bacon, crisped up in the microwave, crumbled up and put into the bottom of the piecrust before the grated cheese. Indulgent and delicious.

The second is a little more complicated, but way worth it. It is a fact of life that homemade piecrust far outclasses store-bought. Look up “Williams-Sonoma Basic Pie Dough” for a simple crust that comes together in about 20 minutes if you work quickly.