Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Crustless Quiche with Salad, Parsley Potatoes

This is the fourth main-meal idea I'm posting using items from my friend, Jane's, shopping list.

These are simple, nutritious meal suggestions for families with kids. Jane's two are 12 and 10 and they're at an age where they'll eat most of what their parents eat, bar some greens.

I remember loathing spinach as a child; the bitter flavor and the texture was too sophisticated for my taste buds.

I'm still not that keen on plain cooked spinach, but tossed in lashings of butter and garlic -- now that's a different story!

Crustless quiche takes maybe an hour to prepare and cook, and it's terribly easy, plus you can improvise and use whatever veggies you have in the crisper.

As you can see in the pic above, I used a leafy green, red chard is my favorite. Jane tells me her youngest, doesn't like it, or spinach. Broccoli is on her shopping list, so I'm going to propose that as a substitute.

I'm proposing a very basic salad to go with the meal. I dressed the salad to left with a yogurt and garlic dressing.

And the other side is boiled potatoes drizzled with olive oil and coated in freshly chopped parsley.

Crustless Quiche with Salad & Parsley Potatoes
1) Break 3 large or 4 small eggs into a bowl. Pour 1 & 1/2 cups of milk (or Half & Half) over eggs, season with S & P (and a little nutmeg if you like). Beat well.
2) Meanwhile, put 3 or 4 potatoes into a pot and gently boil till tender.
3) Wash, and chop into pieces whatever greens you have on hand, i.e. spinach, chard, broccoli, zucchini etc. Toss greens in a little olive oil with some onion (or leeks or shallots or spring onions) till transparent. Then place sauteed greens & onion into an oven-proof bowl.
4) Pour egg and milk mix over greens, and top with grated cheese of your choice.
Note: You could add some cooked chicken pieces or salmon pieces to the quiche for additional protein.
5) Put crustless quiche into oven at 350 degrees for about 40 mins.
6) Wash and drain your choice of lettuce. Pop in a salad bowl. Decorate with chopped tomatoes.
7) For the dressing, plop some yogurt into a cup, pour in olive oil to thin the yogurt, squeeze in juice from half a lemon, squeeze a garlic clove through a garlic crusher into the cup, then stir contents thoroughly. Pour dressing over salad.
8) Drain potatoes, cut into pieces, pop pieces into a serving bowl, drizzle with olive oil, season with S & P. Chop a handful of parsley and sprinkle over potatoes.

The flavor pals in this meal are simple and intuitive: parsley with potatoes, cheese with milk and eggs, a garlic-yogurt dressing over lettuce to add oomph to a subtle-flavored quiche.

If you would like to try your hand at pairing foods and flavors other than what I've suggested above, I'd highly recommend FoodPairing as a resource. Keep it bookmarked on your computer and refer to it when you need help preparing meals for your family and friends.

Cooking with flavor pals or using the technique of food pairing, which I refer to often in this blog, is a great tool for becoming recipe-independent, which is also something I refer to often.

My theory is that when you become independent of recipes and recipe books, and instead trust your inner culinary-expert, you're less likely to make extravagant and unnecessary food-purchases at the store and thus more like to have success sticking to grocery budget.

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