Friday, January 02, 2009

Quiche with Friends

As a consequence of my broken leg (and ankle) and my temporarily permanent location on the couch, I am happily relying on the kindness of others. Last night, friends Jane Duncan and David Barclay came by to make dinner. It's such a treat to have friends make themselves at home in the kitchen, calling out questions such as where I keep my pastry knife, rolling pin, flour and salt. What could they be making?

David made one of his specialities- a delicious zucchini cheese quiche.
We also had a simple green salad with carrots and tomatoes and homemade dressing. The perfect accompaniment.

Unfortunately, I can't share the recipes as I have no idea. I do know that David would have preferred to use half butter, half shortening in his pastry.

Instead, here's one of my favorite quiches, sans pastry. It's the perfect recipe if you're not confident in your pastry skills.

Smoked Salmon Quiche with Potato Crust
Source: Emeril Lagasse, Food Network

3 1/4 cups cooked potato, grated and squeezed dry
2 tablespoons melted butter, plus 1 tablespoon whole butter
1 tablespoon Essence, recipe below
1/4 cup Parmesan,
finely grated
2 medium leeks, halved and thinly sliced, about 1 cup
1/2 teaspoon minced garlic

4 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
3 eggs
1 cup heavy cream
6 ounces smoked salmon
2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Lightly grease a 9-inch deep-dish glass pie plate.

In a bowl, combine the potatoes, 1 tablespoon of the melted butter and Essence, and toss to combine. Add the Parmesan and toss to combine. Press the potato mixture into the prepared pie plate, spreading to evenly cover the bottom and up the sides. Bake until the potatoes are golden brown, 25 to 30 minutes. Remove from the oven and cool on a wire rack.

Reduce the oven to 350 degrees F.

Pour the remaining tablespoon of butter into a small skillet over medium heat. Add the leeks and saute until softened, about 4 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 30 seconds. Remove from the heat.

Place the cream cheese in a large bowl and using a wooden spoon, stir in the leeks and lemon juice. Add the eggs, 1 at a time, stirring just until combined. Add the cream, salmon, dill, salt, and pepper and mix well.

Pour the cream cheese-salmon mixture into the cooled potato crust and bake for about 30 minutes, until golden and the batter is set. Cool quiche for 20 minutes before serving. Serve warm or chilled.

Emeril's ESSENCE Creole Seasoning:
2 1/2 tablespoons paprika
2 tablespoons salt
2 tablespoons garlic powder
1 tablespoon black pepper
1 tablespoon onion powder
1 tablespoon cayenne pepper

1 tablespoon dried oregano
1 tablespoon dried thyme

Combine all ingredients thoroughly.
Yield: 2/3 cup

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