Potato Crusted Quiche

Potato Crusted Quiche

One of my earliest posts was about having an elegant and delicious go-to recipe that would wow your guests without stressing you out.  I also believe that this applies to brunch – having a couple of recipes up your sleeve to make your guests feel honoured and that you can do bleary-eyed.  I love brunch for so many reasons – the food, the drinks (we do hard liquor and bubbly and coffee/tea), the lively conversations, and being able to relax without the bustle of waiting for a table/coffee refills/ketchup etc.

 

shredded potato

 

Normally a quiche has a pastry crust that’s both gluten and fat-filled.  You could always go crustless but for me, the crust is the best part so I thought I’d swap pastry for a potato.  This recipe is adapted from one I found online here and the potato is actually way less fattening than traditional pastry but no less satisfying.  It’s basically hash browns and eggs all in one dish – the perfect brunch combo, like juice and champagne.

 

potato crust close up

 

I also use soy milk instead of cream which helps cut a few calories and great for lactose-intolerant folks.  I find if the fillings are tasty enough, dairy eaters don’t notice.  To prep the potatoes, I recommend a food processor to grate the potatoes and wringing them in a clean kitchen towel.  Just lay the towel on a surface, dump the shredded potatoes in the middle, gather the four corners of the cloth and lift up.  You have a sac-like situation and you just twist the bottom of the sac while holding to the for corners until you’re squeezing the liquid out of the potatoes.

 

quiche filling

 

I’ve made various versions of this recipe and served it both at brunch and dinner.  When making this for smaller groups (I.e. four or less), I use a long tart pan.  But I find the best way to feed a crowd is to use muffin tins – you can do a variety of fillings and these are the perfect size to sample a few.  I did a mushroom and spinach version as well as a broccoli and cheddar.  I’ve also done caramelized onion and goat cheese in the past which is uber yum but more dinner time for some reason.  It’s great to be creative and experiment with different fillings – I’m always inspired by restaurant brunch menus and my next batch of quiche will be chorizo and goat cheese like the omelet at The School in Liberty Village.

 

 

caramelized onion goat cheese quiche

Caramelized onion and goat cheese quiche in a rectangular tin - perfect for dinner or lunch with a fresh green salad

Potato Crusted Quiche

Normally a quiche has a pastry crust that's both gluten and fat-filled. You could always go crustless but for me, the crust is the best part so I thought I'd swap pastry for a potato. This recipe is adapted from one I found online here and the potato is actually way less fattening than traditional pastry but no less satisfying. It's basically hash browns and eggs all in one dish - the perfect brunch combo, like juice and champagne.
Course: Appetizer, Breakfast, Main Course, Snack
Diet: Gluten Free, Vegetarian
Keyword: corn-free, eggs, gluten-free, mushrooms, potato, yeast-free
Author: ness

SPECIAL EQUIPMENT

  • 12 cup muffin pan (one pan if making one variety, 2 pans if making both varieties)

INGREDIENTS

  • ***Double the crust and egg mixture quantities if doing both fillings***

Crust:

  • 2 to 3 medium Yukon gold potatoes (shredded)
  • 1 to 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • pinch salt

Egg Mixture:

  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 cup milk or cream (I use plain soy)
  • pinch salt and pepper
  • Spray oil or canola oil for greasing pan

Mushroom and Spinach Filling:

  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 1 onion (diced)
  • 1 cup mushrooms (finely sliced)
  • 1 cup baby spinach (washed and dried)
  • 1/2 cup shredded mozzerella (I use goat cheese)

Broccoli and Cheddar Filling:

  • 3/4 cup broccoli florets (cut into tiny pieces (no stems))
  • 1/2 cup medium to strong cheddar (I use goat cheese)

INSTRUCTIONS

  • Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees. Coat muffin tins with spray oil or grease the pans. Place potatoes in the middle of a clean dish towel and gather the corners of the cloth together. Wring the excess liquid from the potatoes in the towel. In a medium mixing bowl, toss potatoes with olive oil and salt. Scoop a heaping tablespoon of the potato and press into the muffin tin to create a crust. Make sure to evenly cover the bottom and have the edges going up over the sides (it’s ok to go a bit higher the side because the potatoes shrink a bit). Bake for 15 to 20 minutes until the edges are golden brown and dry. Let cool and lower oven heat to 350 degrees.
  • For mushroom and spinach filling: In a skillet, add oil on medium heat. Add onions until they start to sweat, about 2 minutes. Add mushrooms, let cook for about 6 to 8 minutes until mixture is dry, stirring occasionally. Add the spinach and stir until wilted, about 30 seconds. Let cool slightly.
  • Assemble the quiche. For mushroom and spinach quiche, add about 1 teaspoon of the filling and 1 teaspoon into each potato shell. For broccoli and cheddar, add 1 teaspoon of broccoli and 1 teaspoon of cheddar into each potato shell. In a separate mixing bowl, whisk together eggs, milk, salt and pepper until light and fluffy. Carefully pour egg mixture over filling. If making both varieties, double the egg mixture. Bake for 15 minutes or until firm around the edges, but still wobbly in the middle. Let cool slightly and serve warm or at room temperature.
Adapted from Food Network's Cook Yourself Thin
Pesto Eggplant Brie Pizza with Truffle Oil

Pesto Eggplant Brie Pizza with Truffle Oil

On my way back from Montreal, I stopped by the airport bakery cafe MBCO where I always go to pick up a dozen Montreal style bagels for my dad.  I love that bakery – it’s always full of lovely and tempting goodies including gorgeous fresh breads, sammies, and wraps.  But what really caught my eye was the eggplant brie pesto pizza in the display.  Of course, I had to pass and munched on my gluten-free granola bars instead while longingly eying that pizza.

Inspired by the MBCO’s pizza, I went to WholeFoods in Toronto and picked up their ready to bake gluten-free pizza crusts.  I’ve never tried them before but thought I’d give it a go.  Although I love making my own dough, sometimes convenience just wins out.  The crusts are a tad on the thick side, but I’m a fan of super thin pizza crusts.  The flavour is nice and it’s not too chewy or hard once baked.  I’d definitely buy these again.

pizza cheat sheet

For the toppings I used my pesto recipe (you can also use store-bought of course) and spooned a layer on the crust followed by the mushrooms.  I grilled up a few slices of eggplant that were lightly brushed with olive oil and put those on with some thick slices of goat brie.  I tossed it in the oven for 15 minutes at 375 degrees and voila – pizza pie.  A bit of chopped flat-leaf parsley added a nice freshness.  The truffle oil is completely optional, but I love the taste of it on my pizza so I drizzled a few drops and some hot chili flakes before I gobbled it up.  All I was missing was my hubby (who was on his way home but got stuck in Newark because of hurricane Irene) and a glass of red wine.  He made it home safely the next day and got to have the pizza for lunch.  truffle oil and pizza

A note about truffle oil – there are 2 kinds available, black and white.  White truffle oil is more delicately flavoured and white truffles are harder to find so this variety is typically more expensive.  I like the bold flavour of the black truffle oil which also happens to be a tad cheaper.  The sticker shock of how pricey either variety is enough to jolt just about anyone (this bottle was $15USD back in Scottsdale) but you really only need a few drops on your pizza.  D was not impressed when I went on a  ‘save money’ kick and came home with the truffle oil claiming it would save us loads of money since we could stay home and enjoy truffle-y things instead of going to fancy restaurants.  In the end I was right, but at the time, it was a tough sell.

This airport carry-on sized bottle should last you many meals and months if you use it sparingly.  So if you like the flavour, I encourage you to splurge and treat yourself/your family and invest in a bottle.  It’s still more cost-effective than going out and buying anything in a restaurant that is ‘truffled’ and definitely gives the ‘wow’ factor to your homemade pizza/pasta/bruschetta.  D now enjoys it regularly on his pizza and our friends and family have been ‘wowed’ whenever we bust it out for them.

Mushroom Melt

Mushroom Melt

Back when J and I would work from our home office, we had the luxury of being able to cook our lunches.  J’s specialty was the mushroom melt on a toast. So easy, delish, fast, and satisfying – you definitely don’t miss the meat in this vegetarian dish. Add a side salad and you have a nutritious and tasty lunch in about 15 minutes flat.  Try this for lunch or even a light supper. Thanks, J, for making all those mushroom melts!

Thinly sliced mushrooms and shallots are the main ingredients in this sammie.  Crimini, white, portobello mushrooms are all great options or you can be fancy and try wild mushrooms.  You can also sub in any kind of onion in place of the shallots.  The chives are a colourful fresh addition, or you could try flat leaf parsley.   Add a GF bun and some cheese and you’re set.  I got my GF buns from Chompie’s, a local AZ deli.  Udi’s makes a GF hamburger bun that’s supposed to be pretty good, though I haven’t tried yet.

mushrooms shallots in pan
cheese on mushrooms on pan
melted cheese on pan
plate view mushroom melt
Mushroom Melt

Gluten Free Mushroom Melt (Vegetarian)

Thinly sliced mushrooms and shallots are the main ingredients in this sammie. Crimini, white, portobello mushrooms are all great options or you can be fancy and try wild mushrooms. You can also sub in any kind of onion in place of the shallots. The chives are a colourful fresh addition, or you could try flat leaf parsley. Add a GF bun and some cheese and you're set.
Course: Main Course, Salad
Diet: Gluten Free, Vegetarian
Keyword: cheese, corn-free, fast, gluten-free, mushrooms, nut-free, sandwich, soup & sandwiches, soy-free, vegetables
Servings: 1
Author: ness

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 1 small shallot (thinly sliced)
  • 1 cup sliced mushrooms
  • 1 tsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1 oz mozzerella cheese (grated or thinly sliced)
  • 1 tsp chives (finely sliced)
  • 1 gluten free hamburger bun (lightly toasted)
  • fresh greens (I used restaurant micro greens from Trader Joes - makes it feel fancy)

INSTRUCTIONS

  • Heat the oil in a skillet on medium high heat. Add the shallots and saute until softened, approximately 2 to 3 minutes. Add mushrooms, and saute until golden brown, about 5 minutes. Add balsamic vinegar and mix through. Turn heat down to low. Using a spatula, push the mushroom mixture into the middle of the pan to form a circle. Place cheese on top and place a lid on top of pan to help speed up melting the cheese. Once cheese is melted, remove pan from heat. Using a spatula, remove mushrooms from pan (try to get them all in one scoop) and place on bun. Add chives and fresh greens. Serve with a side salad (mine had radishes, cucumber, arugula and parsley in lemon vinegarette).

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