Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Two quiches: salmon and chicken-vegetable

Triple hurray for the freezer in the garage! I've shuffled some items around and I have seen its bottom! Noooo....not that bottom, but I am excited about the fact that we are making progress in this effort to use up all we have in the freezer and replace it with some fresh items. Incidentally, it is giving me an excellent idea on what to skip hoarding next time, or what to safely buy five-fold when it's on sale, like half-gallons of milk or frozen vegetable mixes.

BJ, my husband, is a milk-drinker but I am not, so we only freeze half gallons (remove about a 1/4 cup from each plastic bottle before you freeze it, the milk will expand and might break the container if you don't). I have come to really appreciate my huge quantity of frozen vegetables, and will probably continue to stock those, as they come in so handy for stews, soups and as we will see today, quiches. Nothing beats the fresh stuff ofcourse, but frozen is a close second. And I have also learned to freeze meat in smaller portions, to always have a fryer or two on hand and since I have learned to cut and debone a chicken, I no longer have to buy the expensive frozen chicken breasts or tenders ! See Basic Chicken Soup post from November 19 2005 for details on how to cut up a chicken.

Yesterday, I found two 9 inch pie crusts in that same garage freezer, so today we're having Quiche. This can be a great meal for lunch with a salad, or a dinner party if you offer various fillings. Be creative!

Salmon Quiche

1 cup small broccoli crowns (if you use fresh broccoli, steam them first before using)
1 can salmon (16 oz)
5 eggs
1/2 cup milk
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 tablespoon corn meal or breadcrumbs
pinch of salt
pinch of pepper

Preheat oven at 350F. Drain the salmon well and remove skin and bones as well as you can. Mix the eggs in a bowl, and add the milk slowly, beat again, and add in the tomato paste, and beat again until well blended. Remove the pie crust from the freezer, distribute the corn meal or breadcrumbs evenly over the bottom, and place pieces of the salmon on top. A quiche will usually be cut in 8 wedges, like a pie, so make sure each piece has a nice chunk of salmon. Place the broccoli in between the salmon pieces, ensuring that the surface of the pie is well covered. Pour the egg mixture over the salmon and the broccoli, filling the pie crust. Do not overpour.

Place in the middle of the oven and bake for 45'-50' or until a toothpick comes out clear.

This is great served straight from the oven, with a nice salad or cold the next day with some ketchup.

Chicken Vegetable Quiche

2 cups of mixed frozen vegetables: I chose corn, green beans and red peppers for this quiche.
5 eggs
1/2 cup milk
1 large chicken breast
1/2 tablespoon italian seasoning
pinch of thyme
salt
pepper
olive oil
1 garlic clove
brie or grated cheese
1 tablespoon of breadcrumbs or corn meal

Mix the vegetables in a bowl and season with salt, pepper, and the herbs. Set aside. Cut the chicken in small, bitesize pieces and brown quickly in a pan with some olive oil and garlic. Add to the vegetables and stir. Mix the eggs with the milk, and a pinch of salt and pepper. Drain the vegetable/chicken mix of any liquids that might have accumulated at the bottom of the bowl and place in the pie crust, after you have covered the bottom of the crust with the breadcrumbs or the corn meal. This will soak up any liquid that might generate during cooking. Distribute the vegetable/chicken mix over the pie crust. Add grated cheese, or little chunks of brie, then pour over the egg mixture and fill the pie crust.

Place in a preheated oven at 350F and cook for 45-50 minutes.

Have a lovely meal!

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