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Food For Real Men, (and ladies too!)

There once was a humorous outcry that “Real men don’t eat quiche.” I suppose quiche was considered a ladies dish and perhaps men should just stick to rare beef. Well, why should just one sex be the sole fortunate recipient of this enchanting dish?

Quiche is a savory baked custard. There are also sweet baked custards, such as flan or crème brûlée. Quiche is traditionally baked in a pie crust or puff paste. It can also be done crustless in a ramekin, serving them individually. Your family will love this rich and creamy flavor, balanced just right with the tartness of the cheese.

For our quiche today I would encourage you to make your own pie crust using the following recipe. Other options are to purchase pre-made pie dough and place it in your own pie plate or buy a frozen, unbaked pie shells. Remember nothing is better than making it yourself. You can make it and bake it a day ahead and when it is cool lightly wrap it in plastic for use the next day.

Pie Crust

1 ¼ cups all purpose flour

1 stick unsalted butter, cold, cut into quarter inch slices

¼ tsp salt

¼ cup ice cold water

(For zestier flavor add 1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese)

Preheat oven to 375

Place flour, butter and salt in food processor and give it 1 second pulses until a rough texture is achieved, (butter will be tiny pieces, be careful not to over process).

Add the water and pulse until dough is just sticky, turn out onto a floured surface.

(All of this can be done by hand, it just takes a little longer.)

Work dough with your hand 2 or 3 times only, then compress into a ball and flatten until about ¾ of an inch thick.  Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for no more than1 hour.

When ready, place cooled dough on a floured surface and try to press down with the palm of your hand.  If the dough starts to break, allow it to sit and warm up a little, 15 minutes should do.  Roll out dough in a large circle to be about 2 inches wider that your pie plate.  Starting at one end roll dough up onto your rolling pin and lay it out over the pie plate.  Pat dough down into plate and cut off the excess around the sides, (some folks like to crimp the edges). Using a dinner fork dock the bottom of the pie plate. This means to place many tiny holes in the bottom to allow steam to escape during baking.

Bake pie crust for about 15 minutes until it just starts to brown. Remove from oven and allow to cool.

Basic Spinach Quiche

Yield 1

3 eggs

1 egg yolk

4 slices bacon

1/2 medium onion, small dice

1/4 cup sour cream

1 1/4 cups half and half

1/4 tsp salt

1/4 tsp black pepper

4 oz swiss cheese, grated

2 cups fresh spinach

Preheat oven to 350

Gently cook bacon in a small fry pan, when crisp remove to a paper towel to drain, reserve bacon fat. Sauté onion in bacon fat until soft and translucent, add spinach and toss until wilted. Transfer onion and spinach to paper towel to absorb moisture and allow cooling.

Mean while beat eggs, yolk, sour cream, half and half, salt and pepper until thoroughly combined.

Layer cheese and spinach mixture into pre baked pie shell. Crumble bacon on top and gently pour in the egg mixture.

Bake until custard is just set, 30 to 35 minutes, depending upon your oven. Remove from oven and allow to cool for 20 minutes before serving.

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