Monday, July 11, 2011

Meatless Mondays: Zucchini-Crusted Quiche

So this dish is a good example of a meal that sounded so amazing in my head, so unique and different and interesting, that it couldn't possibly live up to my expectations. I was thrilled to be making this quiche and was way too excited about it. Alas, my dreams were dashed.

We got these gorgeous, huge spring onions from my in-laws, and I was itching to use them in something good. Plus, they gave us one huge zucchini to use, and suddenly I remembered something I saw recently. I was able to go to a Taste of Home Cooking School show not long ago, and they made this incredible quiche. Instead of a traditional pie crust, they used a bed of shredded zucchini. How cool is that?

And so, it was settled. I wanted to try that Zucchini-Crusted Quiche for myself, but I would change the filling and make it my own. So I made this beautiful bed of shredded zucchini and sliced spring onion, although I was a bit worried with all the liquid that zucchini can give off. I had set the zucchini in a strainer after shredding it, and I had wrung it out -three times- in a kitchen towel. Still, I was not completely convinced that my zucchini was dry enough by the time I needed to prepare dinner. I crossed my fingers and hoped for the best.

I made this about a day or two after I prepared the Chicken Pepian for CEIMB, so I actually had some leftover pepian sauce to use up. I thought maybe it would be cool to use that sauce as the liquid in the quiche. The original recipe I was using as a model utilized evaporated skim milk for the liquid. I took a risk and threw in the pepian sauce, along with a bit of Mushroom Duxelles for a bit of earthy goodness. I mixed the sauce up with the eggs and egg whites then poured everything into the prepared zucchini "crust."

I used some shredded Muenster cheese on top of the quiche, which gave the finished product a pretty, golden-brown crust on top. This quiche turned out looking amazing and it smelled wonderful, too. I was so hopeful that this was going to work out perfectly.

Well, my luck ran out. As soon as I cut into this quiche to serve it, my heart sank. Underneath the knife was a small puddle of water. Turns out the zucchini wasn't dry enough, after all. It seeped a bunch of liquid while it baked in the oven, and as a result the quiche was sitting in sogginess. We still ate it, and Andy and I agreed that it tasted very, very good. This quiche had so much darn potential! That is why I decided to share this story with you, here. Maybe somebody out there is brave enough to try this, and learn from my mistakes! I think if you had perfectly dry zucchini, this would have been a real showstopper. I will include a guideline recipe below, but of course substitutions and improvisations would be great here!

Zucchini-Crusted Quiche
adapted from allrecipes
makes 4-6 servings

Nonstick cooking spray
1 large zucchini, shredded and drained of all liquid
3 large spring onions (or 6 scallions), sliced
12 oz. liquid (can be evaporated milk, or leftover sauce, etc.)
2 eggs
4 egg whites
1/2 tsp. mustard powder
1/2 tsp. kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
2 oz. Muenster cheese, shredded or chopped

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Spray a 9-inch pie plate with nonstick cooking spray. Gently press the shredded zucchini and spring onions into the pie plate, covering the entire surface evenly. Set aside.

2. In a bowl, combine the eggs, egg whites, whatever liquid you choose to use, the mustard powder, salt, and pepper. Pour the liquid mixture into the zucchini "crust," making sure it is evenly spread.

3. Scatter the Muenster cheese evenly over the surface of the quiche. Bake for 25-35 minutes, or until the center is set and a toothpick inserted into the quiche comes out cleanly. Allow it to rest for 10 minutes before slicing.

1 comment:

  1. This is exactly the same problem I had when I made a spaghetti squash dish a while back. It looked great on the blog I got it from, but mine was just not able to set. Too much liquid. Well, this does sound really good, and I'm glad you guys were still able to eat it. Always a bummer when things don't work out as well as anticipated though :/