Friday, July 11, 2008

RECIPE: Quick Crustless Quiche

A glance in our CSA share bin this week, and you know we are heading for midsummer. The bounty included kale, lettuce, salad mix, green onions, Swiss chard, cabbage, zucchini, mushrooms and potatoes.

I admit it is still sometimes a challenge to use up all my greens even after all these years as a CSA shareholder!

One of my favourite ways to use up a whole bunch of chard or spinach is to toss them into a quiche. To keep things super simple, I often make a crustless quiche (no fiddling around with a pastry crust!)

Quick Crustless Quiche
This is a truly crustless quiche - not like the other "crustless" variety that forms a crust while it bakes. Serve this with a tossed salad and you will use up lots of salad greens too.

Time: 60 minutes
Serves: 4-6

1 tbsp olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 bunch of spinach or chard, chopped
3 eggs
3/4 cup milk
4 slices regular or turkey bacon, cooked until crisp and crumbled
1 cup grated cheddar cheese
2 tbsp fresh parsley, chopped
1/4 tsp each salt and pepper


1. In a large frying pan, saute the onion and garlic in olive oil until tender. Add spinach or chard and cook for 2-3 minutes, or until greens are wilted.

2. In a medium bowl, beat eggs and milk together. Add bacon, cheese, parsley, salt, pepper, and spinach mixture, stirring gently until well combined.

3. Pour into a greased 9" pie plate and bake at 375° F for 30-45 minutes or until golden brown on top and knife inserted in centre comes out clean.

P.S. My new camera arrived today, so photos shall return to the blog next week!

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Swimming in Strawberries

Right about now I'm wondering if I'm up for another round with the berries. I've safely processed, prepared or consumed the entire 18 quarts our family picked on Canada Day. I absolutely adore strawberries, and nothing can compare to the taste of a freshly picked, sun-warmed berry; however, any sort of serious berry picking effort means a large commitment in the days afterwards since berries will only last a couple of days in the fridge. We may go back and pick another 24 quarts if we can squeeze it in by the end of the week. Our local farm offers a deal that if you pick six 6 quart baskets over the course of the picking season, you get the seventh free, and the frugal part of me doesn't want to miss out on getting $10 worth of free berries!

Here are some of my favourite ways to enjoy one of the great tastes of summer:

Jam - I made 3 batches this year. Once you have some experience, you can whip up a batch in about an hour. I use the standard Certo recipe; for some reason everyone tells me my jam is fabulous and wants to know my "secret". I just follow the directions, LOL!

Muffins - Strawberries are a great substitute for rhubarb in these muffins! If you are lucky enough to have both strawberries and rhubarb handy, use half and half for a scrumptious strawberry-rhubarb muffin.

Spinach-Strawberry Salad - always a hit for a potluck dinner

Strawberry Shortcake - I bake the old-fashioned kind, in one large pan, rather than individual biscuits. I prefer to add very little sugar to the strawberries themselves - just a sprinkle to draw out the natural juices.

Once I've got the jam all safely tucked away, and we've all eaten our fill of fresh berries, I freeze the rest on cookie sheets overnight, then transfer them to plastic freezer bags for long-term storage. Frozen berries are perfect for a fresh-tasting smoothie all winter long!

Image courtesy of

Friday, July 4, 2008

RECIPE: Colourful Cabbage Salad

This recipe is a family favourite and one that I prepare on a regular basis year-round. One thing I love about it is that I can make a large batch and it will keep in the fridge well for 3-4 days (although it's rare that it lasts that long around here). You could easily substitute whatever fresh vegetables you have on hand for the peppers and carrots. Moat of the prep time for this salad is chopping the vegetables. Use a food processor to shred the cabbage - this will speed your prep time considerably!

Time: 45 minutes
Serves: 6-8 as a side dish

1 *small* cabbage, shredded (or approx. 1/2 a large cabbage)
1 medium onion, chopped
2 medium carrots, diced
1/2 a medium red pepper, finely chopped
6 strips regular or turkey bacon, cooked until crisp and crumbled (optional but tasty!)
3/4 cup cheddar cheese, cut into small (1/2" or less) cubes
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1/2 cup sour cream
2 tbsp white wine vinegar
1 tbsp honey mustard
1 tsp celery seed
1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped fine

1. In a large bowl, combine cabbage, onion, carrots, red pepper, bacon and cheese.

2. In small bowl, combine remaining ingredients and mix until well combined.

3. Pour dressing over cabbage mixture and stir until vegetables are well coated with dressing.

4. Transfer to serving dish. Can be served immediately or prepared up to 24 hrs in advance.
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