"An Egg" by Petr Kratochvil (Public Domain)
With our economy on shaky legs, homemakers everywhere are looking for tasty and economical ways to feed their families. One of the easiest ways to slash your grocery bill is to work some non-meat proteins into your weekly menus. Beans are a wonderful way to do this, but eggs are even better as they provide many of the necessary animal proteins not found in plant protein sources.
Of course, eggs are high in cholesterol, so you should consider your family members' health before serving them. Young children and pregnant women particularly benefit from eating eggs as the fats and proteins are vital to their nutrition and eggs contain the most concentrated source of Cholin, which is vital to baby's brain development in utero. If you're still concerned, be assured that "Research shows that people with normal blood cholesterol concentrations can consume up to one egg every day as part of a low-fat diet without raising their cholesterol levels." Of course, if you or someone in your family has high cholesterol, you might want to rethink this food choice.
For the rest of us, here is a stellar way to serve up eggs to your family for dinner. It also reheats wonderfully for leftovers. I recommend serving this with some mixed greens sprinkled with lemon juice and freshly ground pepper: that's about all you need; the quiche is so rich!
Ingredients:One baked quiche crust (see my recipe below or use your own)
2 T butter
2 large shallots, chopped
1/2 lb. mushrooms, sliced
dried thyme to taste (I use about 1-2 tsp.)
1/2 c. whipping cream (heavy or regular)
salt and pepper to taste
2 T melty cheese (mozzarella, Gruyere, Provolone, etc.--Gruyere is the tastiest, but other mild cheeses work just as well and, especially if you have them on hand, are more economical)
Directions:In saute pan over medium heat, melt butter. Cook shallots until translucent. Add mushrooms and thyme, and cook about 8 minutes, until mushrooms are somewhat soft but not soggy. Meanwhile, in medium bowl, whisk together cream, eggs, salt, pepper, and cheese until combined.
Spread shallot-mushroom mixture in bottom of baked quiche crust (cooled or warm). Pour egg mixture over.
Bake in 450F oven for 25 minutes or until set and golden. Remove and cool 15 minutes. Serve warm or room temperature.
Makes about 6 servings.
Bethany's Quiche Crust:Combine 1 1/2 c. flour, 1 t. salt, and 1 t. sugar in medium bowl. Cut in 1 stick (1/2 c.) chilled unsalted butter until mixture is crumbly. Stir in 1 egg with fork until well combined; mixture will be sandy at this point. Add cold water 1 t. at a time until dough is of piecrust consistency (about 4-5 tsps.) Wrap in plastic wrap and chill at least 1 hour.
Remove from refrigerator and either roll to 12'' or press with fingertips into greased tart pan. Put sheet of aluminum foil over crust and weight with pie weights or dried beans. Bake in 400F oven for 25 minutes. Remove weights and tin foil. Prick with fork 10 times all over crust bottom. Bake for another 10 minutes until golden. Remove from oven and cool or fill immediately to bake quiche.