Wednesday, July 01, 2009

Not So Fast Quiche Redux

Forgive me for no pictures of late, I'm out in the countryside without the appropriate connective elements.

The restaurant Bla Porten is a famous old establishment on Djurgarden in Stockholm. My vegetarian friend ordered the quiche (a dish I often overlook), and it was full of spinachy-feta goodness. Since I like my eggs sooooo many ways already, adding a quiche to my repertoire was not my first thought, but I had time to mull it over, and I had some puff pastry stashed in the freezer, and for the first time in ages I had bought feta.

Because of the Vasterbotten mini pies I had made earlier, it wasn't such a far leap to think of a spinach and feta based pie either. I looked up some recipes, but ultimately had to come up with my own -- one which was spicier and with a dash of Asian panache. Unfortunately, this recipe is not nearly as quick to prepare and eat as I would like it to be, but during the summer I assume you could bake it in the morning, keep it chilled during the day, then bring it up to room temperature before serving it for dinner, this recipe makes more sense if you're feeding a larger group of people.

The Non Quiche Quiche

two sheets of puff pastry
50 grams spinach (1 1/2 oz) squeezed of water if frozen
1/2 white/yellow onion minced
1 t sesame seeds
1/2 t red chili flakes
50 grams (1 1/2 oz) feta
2 eggs beaten with a dollop of sour cream
1 T salted butter
salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 400 F/200 C.

Thaw puff pastry sheets (about 20 minutes).

While the puff pastry sheets are thawing, mince the onion and saute it in butter over medium high heat. When the onion starts to look translucent, add the sesame seeds to toast and distribute evenly. Add the 1/2 teaspoon of chili flakes and stir for a minute. If you have defrosted spinach, squeeze all the juices out before adding it to the pan. If you have fresh spinach, fry it in the pan until the mixture is quite dry.

Fit pastry sheets to a pie form, trimming as you go. Prick the crust all over with a fork and bake for 10 minutes.

Blend eggs with a dollop of sour cream (milk is an acceptable substitute). When the pie crust is ready, add the onion and spinach mixture to the crust, crumble the feta over the spinach, and pour the egg mixture evenly over the top.

Bake at 375 F/175 C for about 20 minutes, or until egg mixture is set.

Serve with a salad and some chilled melon for a summer meal. I have to say that the chili flakes and toasted sesame seeds give the regular spinach-feta taste profile a new zing. Toasted pine nuts would also be a great substitution if you have them already in your pantry.

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