Mar 4, 2012

Farmer's Market Quiche!

I picked up some strange ingredients at the farmer's market today.  Purple-ish kale, some big "onion" octupi, and a pair of japanese turnips.  Called Katsu, perhaps?  Normally, I'd throw everything into the frying pan and sauté it , but it's Saturday, which means I can eat cheese and eggs!  (NYE 2012 resolution: vegan M-F makes weekends extra special).  So I decided to bite the pastry bullet and go for a quiche.


Japanese Turnip
Octopus Onion
Recipe (roughly):
1.5 c flour
1/2 stick butter
4 egg yolks
dash of cayenne pepper
dash of salt
dash of dried mustard (if you have it; I didn't)
1-3 tsp water

Heat oven to 425 F (or so)

Put flour in a large bowl.  With your hand, create a small well in the center of it.
Add the 1/2 stick butter, yolks, cayenne pepper, salt, mustard.  Save the 4 egg whites for the quiche innards.  With your hands, mash together the butter, egg yolks and spices (it works better if you leave the butter out for a few minutes before using so that it's soft.  Though not too soft: the pastry will be flakier with colder butter.)  It should resemble a crumbly powder at this point. Add 1 tsp of water (or better yet, milk or heavy cream if you have it), until the dough can be formed into a ball.  Turn out onto a flat surface and roll/pound with your hands (rolling pins are a luxury and I was fresh out of empty wine bottles) until it's a big circle that will roughly fit inside of your pie tin.  Mine was super thick at this point, about 1/2 an inch.

Fork the dough shell all over, then place in the oven.  Set the timer for five minutes, check that it's not puffing up too much in the middle (if so, push it back down), then set the timer for another five.  I forgot to set the timer for the second five, so when the kitchen started smelling like pastry I freaked and pulled it out -- perfectly done!  Set aside while you finish the quiche innards.

Quiche Innards:
1 japanese turnip
2/3 a kale bunch (about 1 1/2 to 2 c of chopped kale)
1 octopus onion
1 tbs olive oil
4 egg whites
2 whole eggs
a rind of hard cheese (eg: parmesean, romano, or in my case, hard provolone)

Wash and chop everything.  For the kale, this means cutting out the stems, and chopping.  For the turnip, peel (or slice off) the outer layer, and chop into small, 1/4"chunks.  For the onion, cut off the white bulb at the bottom and chop finely.  Chop the green octopus legs separately and set them aside until later.

Heat a skillet with olive oil on medium, toss in turnip and onion bulb.  Cook for 3 - 4 minutes.  Add kale, cook for another 2 - 3.  Season with spices of your choice, I did a bit of cumin and a lot of ginger.

Turn sautéd veggies into a big bowl.  Add egg whites, 1 egg (beaten, or beat it inside the batter), and 1/2 of the chopped green onion hair.  Pour into shell.  It should fit exactly, cuz you're a boss like that.  Since we used egg whites and I wanted my quiche to come out yellow, I took an extra egg, beat it and poured it on top.  Finally, grate 1/2 cup to 1 c of hard cheese on top, for a cheesey crust.

Instructions say to bake for 340F for 40 minutes.  I did it for 20 min at 435F, then the last 20 minutes at 335F.  I have a theory that temperature only really matters as you get closer to being "done". Feel free to prove me wrong at your own risk.  As always, do what you're the most comfortable with.

Cool, slice, enjoy!

Pastry success!

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