Naked Quiche, Y’All

When I want to make a quiche, I have to make the dough by hand. It’s not difficult, don’t get me wrong. But let’s just say I’ve kneaded enough dough by hand that I can’t wait for my magic mixer to do all the job for me. So when K made a naked zucchini quiche the other day, (I say naked because it doesn’t come with a tart shell), I can’t wait to get my hands on her recipe and test it on H.

I made a couple modifications from her recipe. Yes, I’m not S if I don’t modify every single thing. But I modified it because (a) no zucchinis after 4 supermarkets and (b) leeks are abundant these days. I also (c) swapped the cheddar and parmesan with a strong portuguese cheese that I happen to have in my fridge. I added (d) sun dried tomatoes to make sure the quiche will have flavor and (e) mushroom.

It was good. Really good. I bet it would be even better with the cheddar and parmesan cheeses. But I’m extremely pleased and H’s only complaint is that I didn’t put any bacon in it. The complaint of somebody who’s trying to lose weight. Right.

So I’m going to release K’s recipe to the big blue sea so that y’all can enjoy it. I put my modifications at the bottom.

K’s (NAKED) ZUCCHINI QUICHE

3 C diced, unpeeled zucchini
1 medium onion, chopped
1/2 C grated parmesan
1 C grated cheddar
1/2 C oil
1 C biscuit mix – see below
4 eggs beaten
Salt
Pepper

  • Preheat oven to 350 F (175 C). Grease 9″ pie place or baking dish
  • Combine all ingredients, mixing until zucchini is coated with batter.
  • Bake for 35 mins or till tooth picks inserted comes clean.

HOMEMADE BISCUIT MIX
Yield: 2 cups

2 C all purpose flour, sifted
1 tbsp baking powder
2 pinches of salt
75 gr cold unsalted butter, diced

  • Measure the sifted flour, baking powder and salt into a large bowl. Use a wire whisk to blend thoroughly.
  • Add in the butter.
  • Working with your hands (or use a pastry cutter), pinch and crumble the butter into smaller pieces and mix with the flour until they are thoroughly incorporated with no large piece remains.
  • Store refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 4 months.

Note: When you’re making a pastry or a pie crust, a cold butter is important. Cold butter will help create structure in your mixture, resulted in flakiness in your pastry. Try making two tarts, one with melted butter (taking it to the extreme) and another with cold butter, you’ll understand.

I personally dread working with cold butter with hands. It takes quite a lot of energy to pinch and press and I have very warm hands (lesson learnt from bread making course). And since we’re not making a pastry, I cheated by using a room temperature butter. And put the biscuit mixture in the fridge at least 30 mins before using. I don’t know if it helps, but I feel very smart.

LEEK, MUSHROOM AND SUN DRIED TOMATO NAKED QUICHE
serve 2-3

3 C sliced leeks
1 C grated Queijo Flamengo – a Portuguese version of Dutch Edam
1/4 C vegetable oil
1 C biscuit mix – see above for recipe
1 C sliced mushroom
handful of sun dried tomatoes, roughly chopped
2 eggs
Salt
Freshly ground black pepper

  • Preheat oven to 175 C. Grease a 9-inch baking dish and dust it lightly with flour.
  • In a medium-big bowl, mix all ingredients till well incorporated.
  • Bake about 35 mins or till it turns golden brown and toothpicks inserted comes clean.

Note: In Angola, like in Portugal, Queijo Flamengo is the most common cheese. Sold in slices or in balls, in quarters or halves. The wax (used to wrap the cheese) is red in colour, very much like Edam. The brand of the cheese isn’t always shown, so flavour-wise can be quite inconsistent. Sometimes you’ll find one with a strong flavour, but most of the time, it will be soft (bordering tasteless). So adjust the seasoning based on the queijo you have on hand. Increase the sun dried tomatoes or add bacon.

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