food

This Dusty Kitchen: Garden Vegetable Quiche

Postpartum eating has been confusing. On one hand, I have approximately 15 pounds of extra to lose in order to get back to my pre-baby weight and a healthy BMI. I’ve lost weight before by counting calories and increasing my activity levels, so getting rid of it doesn’t really worry me. Except, on the other hand, I’m breastfeeding, and diet restrictions and dehydration can all affect milk supply.

Surprise, surprise, I care a whole lot more about feeding my daughter than I do about my waist size. Counting calories is out, and I have to learn a new way to get back to my previous healthy weight. (Besides, counting calories isn’t the healthiest way to lose weight anyway, right?) This means a renewed focus not on energy content, but nutrition, no fear of healthy fats, with an eye on portion control.

Quiche is not diet food. Anything with pastry doesn’t really fit in that category, and considering the amount of cream mixed in with the egg in the recipe, not to mention the cheese, this recipe is likely not light on calories. But, it is full of protein – eggs! – and with lots of veggies mixed in, it was the perfect tasty dinner to keep me full and satisfied through my evening 5K run, right to bed time.

This quiche was also a bit of a product of my garden. I needed a recipe that could use up the dozens of cherry tomatoes that came off our single cherry tomato plant, and make use of some of the huge zucchini I found among the weeds this week.

This was the first quiche I’ve ever made. Now, I wonder why I waited so long. Simple enough to make during Isabel’s nap time, delicious enough to feel gourmet, cheap enough to fit our post-baby, tuition-looming finances, quiche may have to become part of my regular meal rotation.

Garden Vegetable Quiche
Adapted from The Joy of Cooking and The Betty Crocker Recipe Card Library

Make the crust. Using a pastry cutter or your hands, mix together 1/2 cup cold butter, margarine, shortening or lard1 cup whole wheat flour, and 1/2 tsp salt until pea-sized.

Over the mix, sprinkle approximately 3 tbsp cold water. Mix to incorporate the water just until the dough is holding together.

Now, you can turn the dough out onto your counter and use a proper rolling pin to roll it out nice and thin. Or, you can do what I did and dump it directly into your pie pan and use your fingers to press it thin, up the sides of the pan. You won’t get a beautiful crust this way, but it’s quick and does the job.

Over the crust, spread 1 onion, chopped, as many cherry tomatoes as desired, cut in half, approximately 1 cup shredded zucchini, and approximately 1 cup shredded cheese. Set aside to prepare the egg.

In a bowl, whisk 6 eggs with 1 cup 10% cream or 1 cup milk of your choice. (Obviously, milk will make this a lower calorie dinner.) Add in 1/2 tsp salt, 1/4 tsp sugar, and 1/8 tsp cayenne pepper.

Pour the egg mixture over the vegetables in the crust. Bake at 425 for 15 minutes, then reduce the temperature to 300 and continue to cooking for 30 minutes, or until a knife or fork comes out clean when stuck into the egg mixture about 1 inch from the crust.

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