Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Quiche Pancetta with Spinach & Smoky Gouda

I experimented a little today and created the following Quiche dish. I wanted a quiche with a rich taste that incorporated spinach into the mixture. I wasn't sure how the following recipe would turn out but it was absolutely delicious! This recipe makes two deep dish quiches so remember to split the ingredients for both pie crusts. You can serve one and freeze the other for later if you like. Let me know if you try making this dish and if you liked it as much as I did.

Recipe as follows:

2 deep dish pie crust
8 eggs beaten
1/4 cup chopped onion
1/2 lb pancetta chopped
salt and pepper
16 oz of heavy cream
1/4 cup of milk
1 pkg frozen spinach, thawed and squeezed dry of juice
1/2 cup smoky gouda cheese sliced into slivers or thin cubes

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Saute onion and pancetta in skillet until onions are cooked. Add spinach to warm and remove skillet from stove. Mix beaten eggs, cream, milk, salt and pepper in mixing bowl. Using whisk mix ingredients well. Layer the pancetta/onion/spinach mixture in the pie crusts. Place cheese over top of mixture covering it across. My cheese was sliced and then crumbled. Pour egg and milk mixture over the top and bake for 45 minutes until browned as in the picture below. Let pie set up 5 minutes before serving. Serve with fresh green salad or fruit. Enjoy!

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Lettuce - Cleaning & Keeping Tips

I love lettuce and several varieties of it too! My family and I love to make salads for dinner. Anything from taco, chicken, steak, to small dinner salads. Let's face it; salad is a staple in my house.

Salad is wonderful if you have the right ingredients and your favorite dressings to boot. Lettuce is readily available and so easy to clean. I always purchase a head of green leaf lettuce and iceburg so that I can mix them up. I also buy Romaine and darker leaf lettuces on occassion. It just depends on what I am making for the week.

I have tried the pre-washed bag salad mixes and single bag varieties but honestly I do not like them. To me the lettuce doesn't have much taste and it doesn't keep very long in the bags they come in. If I have to purchase these I try and use it all immediately.

I just finished washing and spinning my lettuce that will keep for a week. I have iceburg and green leaf pictured below. I wash with really cold water and remove the core on both varieties. I use a salad spinner to spin the iceburg. I spin several times and then lay a paper towel on my counter or chopping board. I place the lettuce on top of the towel and let dry. Drying the lettuce is the key to keeping it longer in your refrigerator. I allow mine to dry for an hour or so. I repeat the process with the green leaf lettuce and allow it to dry also.

Once dried I then place the lettuce in a green vegetable bag keeper (I use separate bags for each variety of lettuce). First, I place a clean dry white paper towel in the bottom of the bag. This allows any moisture to be absorbed. Then I place all the lettuce in the bag and place in my refrigerator in the veggie keeper section. I used to use the plastic lettuce keepers but I simply don't have room for those in my refrigerator and find the lettuce does not keep as well for me. Now you are ready to fix a delicious salad any day of the week! Hope you find my tips helpful.

What better compliment to a salad than a big, red tomato!