Thursday, June 4, 2009

Late May/ Early June food adventures and failures

Apologies for the gaps in updates. The middle of May since now has been a period of transition. My cat has moved in with me, and the blokey is visiting, so I've been trying to impress with culinary delights, but mostly I've been learning the extent of his patience. And I finished teaching those three classes and only have some grade complaints (always with these B+ students wanting As).

First a few of my "experiments"

Exhibit A: Asparagus Quiche of Good Intentions:
Why yes, the arugula and tomato salad with homemade vinagarette dressing is colorful and lovely. (method: wild rocket salad from Trader Joes, add quartered tomatoes, toss with about 1 1/2 Tbs of Olive Oil, 1 Tbs of Balsamic Vinagarette, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1/4 teas of pepper, some dried oregano). This is my summer go-to salad. It's even cheaper at the farmer's market stand at the Greenmarkets all over NY, but there hours are more limited.
But the quiche was a mistake. First, I tried to make my own "crust" following Betty Crocker's olive oil "pat in the pastry" single pie crust.
1& ½ cups, plus 3 tablespoons all purpose flour
1 tablespoon sugar
½ teaspoon salt
½ cup vegetable oil
3 tablespoons cold milk

Place flour, sugar and salt in a pie pan. Mix with fork until blended. In another bowl, add the vegetable oil and milk. Beat with a fork until creamy. Pour oil mixture over the flour mixture. Mix with the fork until moistened. With your fingers, pat the dough across the bottom and up the sides of the pie pan.

For the quice, I looked a bunch of recipes online. I mixed 5 eggs, 1/2 yogurt, 1/3 cup shredded romano cheese, sauteed onions, 12 oven roasted asparagus, 1 handful of wilted arugula, mixed it, layered some mozzerella slices on top, baked it at 425 for about 45 minutes. I expected a quivering, carmelized delicious pie, but it came out with a spongey, goopey mess. That blokey ate with no complaints, making some enthusiastic food noises along the way (bless him).
Lesson learned:
Quiches require real cream, and lots of cheese for substance (like 1 cup)
Less is more in terms of ingredients (you get a soggy quiche if you overdo the ingredients)
Simple arugula salad will cover up almost all salad woes.

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