Monday, February 17, 2014

Mini Quiche: Simple Appetizer for any occasion!

I love quiche. 

There are a few reasons behind my adoration for this dish. I mean lets face it, I love all things french, I enjoy sticking to  trying to stick to a budget, and I absolutely adore miniature sized foods.  

You may not like these things. You may just like eggs, and simple recipes.

You may also not agree to that. And you might just be the type of person that looks at recipes to kill time. In that case, thanks  for stopping by!

But one thing is for sure: This little quick quiche is worth the short steps to making it, and so I just had to share!

Not only is making the appetizer (or meal - I wasn't shy to have about a dozen of these little guys for dinner) simple, but when you make it from scratch you control what goes in it.  Basic logic, I know. 

But you would be surprised how many people use the logic of "Frozen is Faster!" and buy the quiche (can they even be called that!?) that you get in bulk at a super store. Yea ok, sure, frozen pre-made food could be faster, but is faster always better? I say NO!!! 

Hey, look, if that's your style its all good! I don't care- more healthy ingredietns left in the store for me :) And if you ever change your mind, I will be here waiting with oven doors wide open.

Why mini quiche? Well here I was sitting (no, standing) wondering:
"What can I make with all the eggs and spinach I have left this week?" (eggs that were from a friend's chickens so they were extra delicious might I add)...
Yes, I am trying to use what we HAVE before we buy more. Oh it's the worse!  Ha- Just kidding, you should try it. You would honestly be surprised at what you can make without running to the store all the time (and believe it or not, you will save some cash).

Back to the self talk.... I didn't want to make something I would eat in one sitting. And I am always able to scarf down a big plate of scrambled eggs... and boy do I love omletttes...  

No... I wanted to make a bite sized snack to share with friends and their kids when they came over. 

And then this was when it hit me... I was standing there talking out a loud to my son who was playing on his drum-set with the bottles I could have sworn we cleaned and packed away. And I saw the lid to one roll past me as he giggled at his musical accomplishments, and I wondered.....what if...could it....

Yes! It was the perfect size to make little round of pie crust which obviously would be amazing filled with quiche goodness!

And that's how things get done. Mom style.

Mini Quiche
What You Need (to make appx. 4 dz)
2 1/2 cups Flour
1 stick (1 cup) Butter (can use lard or dairy free butter)
1/2 Ice water
*Or just buy the roll and bake pie crust - you will need one package (which is two 9 in rounds) -and yes, the pilsbury kind is dairy free (but it does use lard - so there's that)

5 Eggs
1/2 cup Cream or if you have a dairy allergy, Vegetable Stock
1/2 tsp Herbs de Provence (because its a french thing and its good!)
1/4 tsp Salt

What You Can Add: (any thing really.... but here's what I added - and I made 5 different kinds)
Dinced Tomato
Diced Red Onion
Chopped Olives
(Bacon is a huge favorite for the meat lovers out there)

Here's the few short steps:

1. Preheat the over to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

2. Crust (also read in regards to pre-made kind):
To make flaky butter crust simple cut the butter into the flour using a fork or dough cutter. You could also use the pulsate function of a food processor. NExt slowly add the ice water until the dough is the consistency you need to roll it out. If you need a dairy free crust, go ahead and use some of the Vegan Butter options your store carries. You will need to roll this out to appx. 1/8 inch.

To use pre-made crust, cut open the box, open both rounds of dough, and you are ready!

Please note even with the pre-made crust you will need your rolling pin.

3. Filling:
With a blender, hand blender, or by hand mix the eggs with the cream or stock, and spices. For the spinach quiche's I blended the spinach in for the perfect hue of green. For all the others I just added the veggies after the eggs were scrambled.

Note: the blender will give the eggs the perfect mix whereas the by hand method may leave the yolks and whites to be separate in places. This will not affect the quiche, but for consistency and ease of filling such small cups, the blender method works best!

4. Lightly grease the mini muffin tine with either cooking oil, butter, or cooking spray.

5. Using whatever you have to make the perfect rounds, cut enough rounds to fill your mini muffin tin. Press the pie crust lightly into each mini muffin tin to create a cup. 

Top: Using hand blender to make the best consistency
Bottom: Dairy free alternative

Spinach, Tomato, Red Onion, and Colby Cheese.
6. Spoon enough filling into each muffin cup to leave about 1/8 inch. You can wait to add some of the fillings until now, so as to maximize your different quiche. If you do this, leave a little extra space to prevent spill over.

7. You will need to re-roll the dough to cut more rounds to make additional cups. Continue to Roll, Cut, repeat until all the dough and filling has been used.

8. Bake at 350 degrees fahrenheit for 10-12 minutes, or until the egg is no longer moving when the pan is moved. 

9. Let cool and remove from pan. Repeat until all dough and filling is used.

Enjoy! It may seem like a long recipe, but I assure you it is super simple, crazy delicious, and you can freeze these and have on hand for those last minute appetizer ideas.... yea so you technically have the "Frozen Kind" but you made them from scratch!

Thanks for cooking with me and my family! We love to see you stop by;)
Aimee and Family

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