BLT Quiche: Bacon, Leek & Tomato

bacon, leek & tomato quiche

Yay, it’s one of my favorite days of the month, my Secret Recipe Club reveal day for February!

I’m honored to be a part of this diverse international group of food bloggers.  In case you forgot, everyone in the Secret Recipe Club gets “assigned” a blog from which we are supposed to pick a dish to cook.  But, it’s all done in secrecy.  It isn’t until the ultimate reveal day (today) that everyone showcases the dishes and discovers who’s been their secret foodie link.  This club has provided me valuable exposure to blogs I might not otherwise encounter.

My February assignment is Bobbis Kozy Kitchen.  Before I do anything else I visit the About Me section of the blog to learn about the person behind the recipes.  This is a truly inspirational blog written by Bobbi who transformed her life in the kitchen after undergoing Gastric Bypass Surgery to help lose 160 pounds and after being diagnosed with Breast Cancer.  From fast, processed foods to fresh herbs and bountiful veggies, Bobbi became obsessed with cooking and created the blog to showcase all of her recipe discoveries during her renaissance.

From Cod with Grilled Ratatouille Pasta to Cilantro Rice with Lime and Serano, there’s a plethora of recipes to tempt your palate.

I chose to cook Bobbi’s Tomato, Fennel and Bacon Quiche.  My kids loved our Caramelized Onion Quiche and our Chicken Asparagus Quiche and it’s the perfect meal selection for our lazy Sunday mornings or even our Breakfast for Dinner options on Wednesdays.

I was also intrigued because, believe it or not, I had never cooked with leeks.

So, off the store I went for some evaporated milk, some fresh leeks, and read-made pie dough (no way I was going to make a homemade dough) –the only ingredients I didn’t have on hand in my stocked pantry and fridge.

Like most quiche recipes, this one is super easy to make, and my son helped out in the process.  He cracked the eggs and help roll out the ready-made pie shell in the plate.

alex pie crust

He whisked the eggs and milk and helped me chop up the thick-cut bacon that he claimed is “much greasier than the turkey bacon we eat.”

I decided to cut down on the amount of cherry tomatoes since I’m the only tomato lover in the house. I also switched the cheese variety from swiss to cheddar.  And, make sure to thoroughly clean your leeks.  I couldn’t believe the amount of dirt found in between each leaf.

The quiche was a big hit with everyone in the family. The cherry tomatoes and the crisp bacon create beauttiful red hues against yellowish orange backdrop from the cheese and eggs.

The leeks rendered hints of delicate onion flavor without overpowering the dish.

This dish will be added to our breakfast and breakfast-for-dinner rotation and I’m going to use Bobbi’s cheat sheet for more ideas of veggie and meat variations to this dish.

Don’t forget to check out Bobbi’s Kozy Kitchen for more flavorful recipes!



Chicken Asparagus Quiche

This week we resumed our Wednesday night Breakfast-for-Dinner ritual.  We’re trying to get back into many of the routines that were forgotten over summer vacation. I decided to adapt one of Mom’s quiche recipes.  My kids have loved all the other egg-based dishes I’ve made (calling them egg pies) so, I figured I’d experiment with a Chicken Asparagus Quiche.

This quiche dish is very easy to create and contains some short cuts to appeal to any hard-pressed parent trying to get a quick meal on the table.  Rather than cooking chicken, just buy rotisserie chicken.  And, instead of making a pie crust, just buy one that’s ready-made pie crust. You’ll significantly reduce your amount of prep time.

I knew my only challenge would be the asparagus.

Fresh asparagus ready to be chopped

But, I loved the fact that most of the veggie would be hidden under layers and layers of chopped chicken, eggs, and generous amounts of shredded cheese.

After only 15 minutes of prep time, the pie shell was filled with its contents and ready for baking.

The finished product smelled like an amazing cheese soufflé and looked like a perfect self-contained meal.  I smiled, knowing this dish would be a home run.

Au contraire.

Within seconds of taking their first bites, both kids proclaimed (almost in unison), that they “liked the other one better.” This statement is referring to the Caramelized Onion Quiche.

I scratched my head quizzically while thinking there’s no way they could’ve liked that one more.  This quiche contained fresh rotisserie chicken, not one but two different varieties of shredded cheese, lots of eggs, and half and half.

AH, the asparagus!!!  The asparagus.  That was the deal-breaker.

Both kids ate a tiny piece of the veggie in their first bite and their faces immediately crinkled up like Cabbage Patch dolls.

Lucky for me the asparagus was easy to pick out and they kids were on their way to finishing their pieces.

While neither kid accepted the generously-offered second slice, my son did tell me that it would probably taste better next time around with sautéed broccoli.

Fine by me.

When it involves vegetable suggestions, I’ll take cooking requests from my kids any day!

Caramelized Onion Quiche and an OXO Good Grips Giveaway!

I’m thrilled to have been selected as part of the OXO Blogger Outreach Program to help spread the word about OXO Healthy Eating Tools.

Over the past year, as I’ve slowly been upgrading my kitchen and organizing my chaotic pantry, OXO has been my go-to brand!  I love all of my recent OXO purchases: angled measuring cups, locking tongs, measuring cups, and most importantly, their pop storage containers! But, I had NO IDEA how much I desperately needed the OXO Hand-Held Mandolin Slicer.

Wahoo!  My very first OXO Hand-Held Mandolin Slicer

Up until now, slicing for me has always been somewhat of a finger gamble, even after passing the Knife Skills class at the Institute for Culinary Education.  I decided to try out my new slicing gadget making one of Mom’s tasty quiches.

Growing up, Sunday brunches were just as important for family bonding as our weekday dinners.  And, Mom didn’t relax on the meal selection either.  Forget simple generic a la carte options like toasted bagels with cream cheese or cereal or oatmeal.  Nope, Mom always served something homemade and fresh from the stove top or oven: blintzes or casseroles or quiches.

Because my kids LOVE eggs and cheese, and they would never shy away from a pie crust, I decided it was time to bake my first quiche for the family for our Wednesday night theme night: Breakfast-for-Dinner Night!  The caramelized onion quiche is so simple to make, it’s reminiscent of Mom’s Cheeseburger Pie and Breakfast Egg Casserole.  All three dishes only require some sort of simple crust, egg-based “batter,” and bake time in the oven.

Yep – a simple ready-made refrigerated pie crust will due

Since I wasn’t required to make a crust from scratch but rather, use a “refrigerated pie crust,” the only remaining challenge to the directions: “thinly sliced onions.”  No matter how many knife classes I take, I still can’t cut an onion without: crying, creating slices of varying thickness, having the onion roll off the counter top, risking cutting off all of my fingers!  I couldn’t wait to try my new OXO Hand-Held Mandolin Slicer because it’s so intuitive and beyond easy to use:

  • You can easily adjust to 3 different thicknesses to make uniform food slices.
  • The slicer comes with a food holder that allows you to grip the food without risk of cutting yourself.
  • You can easily slice on a cutting board or plate or even hook it over a bowl (like I did) with its non-slip foot and cut directly into a bowl.

Knowing my kids don’t like onions, I wanted its flavor to be in the background, not foreground of the quiche. I reduced the onion amount from 5 to 3 and  strategically placed the slicer’s setting on “thin” and effortlessly sliced away.  Within seconds, I had perfectly symmetrical onion slices ready to get caramelized on the stove top.  The sweet onion smells seemed to hypnotize my kids, forcing each out of their room to inquire about the mysterious breakfast-for-dinner dish.

Onions crudely cut from a knife

OXO Hand-Held Mandolin Slicer set up and ready to go

Perfectly-sliced onions from OXO Mandolin Slicer

Crust with caramelized onions

Only 40 minutes later, I  served a gorgeous  quiche, decorated with swirls of onions beautifully baked in a sea of eggs.  Even though I tried to upsell the eggs and CHEESE and pie crust, my kids still glommed onto the fact that they don’t like onions. I promised this dish would only expose them to the onions, not overwhelm them.  And, that’s exactly what they experienced.

Final Quiche

I’m convinced my OXO Hand-Held Mandolin Slicer helped me achieve these results- without it, the onions would’ve been cut irregularly (some fat, some thin) and therefore, would’ve completely dominated each individual slice.

Instead, the quiche was a raging success—two servings for each kid.  And, not one onion complaint!  In fact, my kids were so impressed with their new gadget, they starting slicing everything they could find in the fridge, from apples to zucchini.

Our best apple slicer yet

 

Now, it’s your chance to WIN your very own Hand-Held OXO Mandolin Slicer!  

To Enter: Leave a comment on this post telling me what you’d make with your new OXO Han-Held Mandolin Slicer.

Earn More Chances to WIN (leave a comment for each entry letting me know you did it, even if you already follow)

Official Rules: Open to US residents only. Must be over 18. Giveaway will end on April 24, 2012 at 8:00 pm (Eastern Time). One winner, with a valid entry, will be selected using random.org. Winner will be notified by email and will have 48 hours to claim their prize or another winner will be selected.

Disclaimer:  I was not compensated for writing this post. I did receive a free OXO Hand-Held Mandolin Slicer to use and enjoy!  As always, all opinions expressed in this post are my own.

 

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