Thursday, October 25, 2012

On rearranging letters and substituting dairy products

Do you know how to keep a budding linguist occupied for hours? Hand her the word i-n-s-u-b-o-r-d-i-n-a-t-e and ask her to find all the possible words hidden inside. It's a fantastic word for that, really. It has all the vowels, plus r, s, and d, which leave open all kinds of affix possibilities.* 

As it turns out, I don't just see *words* as a series of abstractable components, I see everything this way.** Especially cooking. This doesn't lend itself well to baking, but is excellent for on the fly substitutions. Like when you realize that your playgroup will have 6 adults and 5 kids at it and 1 quiche isn't going to cut it, even though you only have a pint of half and half for a recipe whose single quiche requires 1 1/2 cups! A quick google reveals that you can make a quiche with the same amount of yogurt as of half-and-half in an otherwise identical recipe, and your lunch is saved! 

Since I'm going to be including a recipe with every post, it seemed only fair to warn you that the recipes will likely be a bit more of a meta-narrative of ingredient assembly than a precision manual to follow, and it's likely that my blogging may be a bit esoteric as well. Feel free to ask for clarification on either any time. :)


I grew up thinking that quiche was in the mystical category of things that were best left to the professionals. It's been a delightful surprise to discover that I was wrong. Once you've got a good pie crust - make or buy, whatever works for you!- it is not any harder than anything else made from scratch. You put a bunch of shredded cheese, (semi-)liquid dairy, beaten eggs and some precooked filling (if you don't "sweat" it first, it will make your quiche more watery than you want) into a pie crust and stick it into the oven. 40 or so minutes later, you get a glorious egg pie.

Basic Quiche:

3 eggs

1 1/2 cups half-and-half (or today, I made it with 1c half-and-half and 1/2c plain yogurt)

1/8 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon white pepper

1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg

4 ounces Jarlsberg cheese, shredded (I used baby swiss)
2 ounces mozzarella cheese, shredded (I used cheese sticks!)

1-2 oz shredded parmesan

1/2-1 cup of other filling ingredients (I used a mix of bacon, broccoli and onion).

1 (9 inch) unbaked pie shell

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F (220 degrees C).
In a large bowl, whisk together eggs and half-and-half. Season with
salt, white pepper and nutmeg. Place shredded Jarlsberg and mozzarella
in the pie shell. Pour egg mixture over cheese.
Bake in preheated oven for 15 minutes. Reduce heat to 350 degrees F
(175 degrees C), and bake for 25 minutes, or until crust is golden and
filling is set. Allow to set 5 to 10 minutes before serving.

*To be honest, I'm kind of itching to stop writing this now, bust out a ballpoint and an envelope back and go to town. ursine! bruised! binders! … Where were we again?

**Bureaucracies, man. They are just a bunch of people with boxes to check. Help them check their boxes and it will go well with you.

1 comment:

annie said...

I don't know what I love more: "I used cheesesticks!" or the little footnotes. Here's to esoteric blogging!