Friday, October 29, 2010

#15 Vegetable Quiche

In 2004 we took a trip to Paris and spend about 10 days there. One afternoon we walked down Rue de Grenelle all the way to the Eiffel tower and the river Seine. It was the most beautiful feeling to be near this amazing structure. In reality the construction is larger than life and better than all the pictures that I have ever seen of the Eiffel tower. We walked around Port de Paris - a small shipping port where all the sight-seeing and private boats are docked on the river Seine. On the way to the Tower, passing several small cafes, boulangeries and patisseries filled with delicious pastries, breads, cakes and goodies- intricate displays in all the windows. Without a doubt, I am drawn into the shop to taste a bit of sweet heaven!! Even the small shops have foot long sandwiches made from “baguettes” -- mostly tuna, cured salmon, salami and ham.
We took a short side trip to Brugge in Belgium --a small town that has waterways and reminds you of Venice when you float along them in boats. Anyhow, in Paris we took several boat rides on the Seine river to see the beautiful sights and architectural bridges. We spent an entire day exploring the Cathedral of Notre Dame. The peace and beauty of the building structure, gardens and surrounding area was very gratifying to me.  It is said that the Notre Dame de Paris (Our Lady of Paris)was among the first buildings to be built with a flying buttress- associated with Gothic Church architecture. A massive masonry block on the outside of the building like a wing...the gargoyles on the tower look terrifying, and  are supposed to scare off evil and protect the Cathedral from evil spirits. 

We quietly watched the light filtering through the stained glass windows --it was rather spectacular early in the morning. The Opera House with its pastel colors reminded me of a well frosted cake. There are a ton of crepe stands on Blvd Montparnasse. Some have a stack of ready-made crepes that vendors will fill to order, fold them into a wedge and put them in a parchment so you can eat them as you walk along. R and I had our favorties from fillings like banana/nutella, ham and cheese, egg and two cheeses, lemon and sugar or spinach.
The glamorous Galeries Lafayette,  a Paris fashion institution with designer collections for the young and old. It also houses a gourmet food market where we grabbed a Quiche Lorraine and salad. This recipe is my version of a Veggie Quiche that I made in my own kitchen....
On weekends, along Rue de Grenelle they had the best Farmers Markets I have ever seen.... the special cheeses and freshly baked goodies are as attractive to the eye as they are to eat. I love going into one of the cafes and picking up a small pastry, sandwich and coffee. Since we were at a hotel and not an apartment I was not able to dish up something new from the lovely produce sold at the FM. I  remember having dinner one day at the Oui Pouvrier a cafĂ© that served Fois Gras and smoked Duck on bread over a large salad and pear sorbet. 

Frozen pre-prepared Pie crust for 9 inch pies
Whole Milk or cream- 1 cup
Thyme- 1/2 tsp
Nutmeg powder- 1/4 tsp
Worcestershire sauce- 1tblspn
Salt and pepper to taste
Grated Gruyere cheese- 1 cup
Garlic-3-4 cloves
Any Vegetables of your choice like
Zuchini, frozen chopped Kale, Carrots, Onions, Sweet Bell Pepper, Garlic, Tomatoes and Mushrooms
My breakfast slice of home-made veggie quiche............

1. Take a Oven safe Pie Plate. Roll out the Frozen/pre-prepared Pie crust to about 1/4 " thin round. Heat Oven to 350 degrees.
2. Lift the round crust over a rolling pin and spread it on the Pie Plate. Using your index finger and thumb press down on the edges of the plate to fit the lining. Press or pinch aroung the edge of the plate to your desired shape. If desired you can use a fork to create edging. Keep aside.
3. In a mixing bowl break the eggs and whole milk and beat well with salt, pepper, thyme, nutmeg and worcestershire. Beat in your processor or whisk until light.
4. Place a skillet on fire and lightly saute the onions and garlic. Remove from fire when they turn translucent.
5. Squeeze out all the water from the frozen kale. Add to the egg mixture, the onions, zuchini, red pepper and the drained kale. Mix well.

6. Pour the mixture into the prepared Pie Plate, decorate with saved mushroom and zuchini slices and place in the pre-heated oven. Bake for about 30-45 minutes or longer until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean.

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