Green Eggs and Ham Quiche

Green Eggs and Ham, by Dr. Seuss

Green Eggs and Ham, by Dr. Seuss

This dish was inspired by a request from a Fackbook fan and my recent article on eggs (I made a reference to Dr. Seuss’s “Green Eggs and Ham“). These are great traditional quiches and a great treat for the kids.

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups fresh spinach, chopped
  • 1 small white onion, chopped
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 cups milk
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 tablespoon shortening
  • 1 cup chopped or diced ham
  • 2 cups shredded Cheddar cheese
  • 1 Roma tomato, thickly sliced

Directions:

Prepare 4, 4 inch x 1 inch crust as described in Cheesy Quiche Crust.

Just out of the oven

Just out of the oven

Prepare the custard by mixing spinach and onion in a food processor. Add eggs, milk, flour and shortening and mix thoroughly.

Green Eggs and Ham Quiche

Green Eggs and Ham Quiche

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Place all 4 crusts on a baking sheet for ease in handling. Bake crust for 5-10 minutes. Remove from oven and fill with custard. Bake custard for 15 minutes, then remove from oven. Top each quiche with a thin to moderate amount of cheese. Finish topping with chopped or diced ham. Return to the oven and cook for an additional 5 minutes.

Plate with slice of Romano tomato.

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (1 votes, average: 5.00 out of 5)
Loading...

Cheezy Quiche Crust

I like a little flavor in my crust, so the first idea I had to spice up my quiche crust was adding cheese to a basic recipe. The results were pleasing and pair very well to traditional quiche recipes.

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup cold butter, cut into small pieces
  • 3 tablespoons shredded Cheddar cheese
  • 1 – 1/2 tablespoons cold water as needed

Directions:

In a large bowl, add flour and sprinkle in the chopped butter. Rub butter into the flour until it looks like bread crumbs. Add the grated cheese and mix thoroughly. Add water over mixture, about a teaspoon at a time, stirring lightly with a fork. Add enough water to allow the dough form a ball and easily leave the side of the bowl. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap, or place in air tight container and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.

Preheat an oven to 375 degrees F. Roll out dough, and place in baking pan. I usually do this with small 4 inch by 1 inch quiche/tart pans (yields about 5 thin crust, 4 medium crust), though a 9 1/2″ pie/quiche/tart pan could be used. Prick holes over the bottom of the pastry with a fork. Crust can be frozen over night.

Bake crust in oven for 5-10 minutes before filling with quiche custard of your choice.

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (1 votes, average: 5.00 out of 5)
Loading...

Water: The Main Ingredient!

Not only is water necessary for our survival, it is essential in the many food dishes and drink preparations that require certain types to make them palatable  to the senses.  Alkaline water, for example, is used in Asian cuisine to give a yellow color to noodles and cakes, or to give beans, seeds and veggies a bright color.  Rose and orange blossom water are other examples that give Middle Eastern dishes a unique and exotic flavor. Depending on what type of flavor we’re after in our dinner masterpieces, it is the type of water required in our recipes that is the one ingredient that needs more attention.  Hopefully, this water guide will help you decide on what type of water to use.

Photograph by A.J. French

Photograph by A.J. French

  • Artesian Water– The king of quality water you can find! Artesian aquifers are found beneath the surface protected by rock and clay without any exposure to outside contamination or air pollutants.  Impressed? Benefits from drinking (or cooking) with this water range from getting strong hair, skin, nails and bones to potentially reducing your Alzheimer’s risk due to the high silica content in the water (Reuter’s Health, 2009).  This water is great to cook with but can also be used to produce a tasty home-brewed beer!!
  • Well Water– If you can tap into an aquifer by drilling a well in your backyard, then make sure you have a good well water system installed.  If you’re unlucky to have an old well system, then chances are you might run greater risks than worrying about smelly water!  Hazards with using well water include high lead, salt, bacteria, arsenic, and petroleum hydrocarbons just to name a few.  Cooking-wise, the high iron content in well water may turn your poached eggs green but don’t let this discourage you from using well water in your pan.  Get your water tested, filter it and enjoy the benefits of taping into water from a natural aquifer.
  • Distilled Water – This water is heated to the boiling point so that impurities separate out when it becomes a vapor.  The impurities are eliminated and the water gets moved from steam to liquid by a cooling it.  This process follows Raoult’s law.  Distilling has been around since biblical times for different uses (e.g., perfumes, alcoholic drinks, etc.), and it has “purified” water from lakes, rivers and streams to this day.  It is still potable water that can be used for human consumption but still tastes bad.  I would use it in a steam iron or car.
  • Spring Water – Similar to well water in that they both come from an aquifer but is different in that they flow out to the surface naturally.  This water is rich in trace minerals, so that part is good for you, but beware of drinking from a spring outside the safety of a bottled water company!  There are quite a few studies that show hot springs have a very high level of fluoride, so don’t use them to cook your food or think you’ve got instant hot drinking water for coffee or tea if you’re camping somewhere!  Fluoride is good for your bones and teeth but too much of it (like too little of it) is not healthy (USA Today, 2006).
  • Mineral Water – So, you may wonder what the difference between spring and mineral water is…  Well, the only difference is that spring water must be collected directly from the source that the water flows out of, and mineral water is the water that comes from underground and flows over rocks, which increases the mineral content.  Also, mineral water can’t be treated like spring water but can be filtered to get rid of any grit and dirt.
  • Sparkling Water – This water can come out with carbonation naturally or artificially.  It can be filtered and then carbonated again.  Besides making cool spritzers out of this water, it can be added to bread recipes replacing still water.  It assists in the rising process of the bread and gives it a holier look to it!  Tonic water is perhaps my favorite of the sparkling water category.  What makes it different from say a regular club soda is the anti-malarial drug, quinine, added to it.  Historically, the English mixed this drug into their sparkling water and added gin to the mix to mask the taste; hence, the classic gin and tonic!

  • Rainwater – Harvested rainwater has many good uses for the home but it is unwise to use for drinking and cooking despite its purity from the heavens.  It’s in the collection that one must worry about.  Collected improperly, all sorts of pollutants, bacteria, etc. during collection could contaminate the water making it unsuitable for human consumption.  However, many people will filter and treat their rainwater to drink and cook with.   Action Against Hunger, a cool charity founded in France, developed a water program called WaSH (water, sanitation and hygiene) to help third world countries find, collect and clean water for the poor.  Rainwater is just one source that can provide healthy water for many.

  • Hard Water vs. Soft Water – It is debatable which one is better but a lot of people enjoy soft water for drinking and cooking.  For some, cooking with soft water makes food look and taste good.  More than likely it’s the sodium content found in the water!  If you have high blood pressure or retain lots of water, drinking straight soft water from the tap might not be a great idea.  Filtering both hard and soft water with a Pur water filter or an expensive reverse osmosis system is enough to make them tasty to drink and acceptable to cook with.

“We lead our lives like water flowing down a hill, going more or less in on direction until we splash into something that forces us to find a new course.”
–Memoirs of a Geisha

Article submitted by Yvette M. Palladino
Contributing writer for H4M
Enjoys ice cold cactus water for good health!

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (1 votes, average: 5.00 out of 5)
Loading...

Slow Cooked Apple and Onion Stuffed Chicken

Apple and Onion Stuffed Chicken with Bacon and Garlic Mashed Potatoes

Apple and Onion Stuffed Chicken with Bacon and Garlic Mashed Potatoes

When I first conceived this recipe, I was going to fry the chicken in butter for about 4-5 minutes a side. However, I had purchased a new slow cooker and was looking for an interesting way to use it. It was suggested that I do a stuffed chicken recipe. Serendipity at its best. I already had all of the ingredients.  So below you will find the altered recipe. The slow cooker gave me plenty of time to relax and fix a side dish of bacon and garlic mashed potatoes, and Bananas Foster for dessert.

Ingredients:

  • 8 boneless skinless chicken thighs
  • 2 tablespoons Olive Oil
  • 1 Green Apple, diced (Granny Smith recommended)
  • 1 Small Red Onion, diced
  • 2 teaspoons Oregano
  • 2 Pieces of bread, toasted, (you can substitute 3/4 cup store bought bread crumbs)
  • 8-10 ounces diced Tomato
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • 1 cup Chicken Broth
  • 3 cloves of garlic, crushed or quartered
  • 1 tablespoon dried Oregano

Directions:

Pounding Chicken Thighs

Pounding Chicken Thighs

Between two pieces of plastic wrap, unroll and pound flat chicken thighs.

Heat olive oil over medium heat. Add onion and apple and cook 6-8 minutes until onion is translucent and apples are slightly softened. Cut toasted bread in to small chunks and add to onions and apples. Add 1-2 teaspoons of salt an pepper. Stir until well mixed then add diced tomatoes. Continue stirring, then remove from heat and cool for a few minutes.

Stuffed Chicken in Slow Cooker

Stuffed Chicken in Slow Cooker

Place a spoon full or more of the onion/apple mixture on each thigh and secure with toothpicks. Place each rolled thigh in a slow cooker. Pour remaining mixture over thighs and add chicken broth and garlic. Sprinkle in salt and pepper to taste (1-2 teaspoons). Start cooker and cook on high for 2 1/2 hours. In the last 15 minutes of cooking add oregano.

Finished Product Ready to Slow Cook

Finished Product Ready to Slow Cook

Serve by plating Stuffed Chicken first then topping with remaining mix. The left over cooking juice can be used as a gravy or additional sauce for the chicken.

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (1 votes, average: 5.00 out of 5)
Loading...

Green Chili Sauce

Green Chili Sauce on Enchiladas

Green Chili Sauce on Enchiladas

This is a traditional New Mexico sauce made with green chilies. It is used on a variety of dishes including hamburgers, enchiladas, eggs, pork, steak and fish. Recently I have used it on Cheezie Chicken Enchiladas and Jucy Lucys. The sauce gains a little heat over time, so make it in advance for a little extra kick.

Ingredients:

  • 4 Hatch or Big Jim Chili Peppers
  • 2 Poblano Chili Peppers
  • 3 Tomatillos
  • 2 tablespoons Olive Oil
  • 2 teaspoons Salt
  • 2 teaspoons Pepper
  • 2 teaspoons Cayenne Pepper

Directions:

Blistered Chilies

Blistered Chilies

Blister the chilies. This can be done several ways.

  • Oven: Place chilies in hot oven 400 degrees for 6-8 minutes until skin blisters away from the flesh.
  • Range top: Cover burner with wire mesh. Place chilies on mesh once burner is heated. Remove when skin is blistered.
  • Grill: Place chilies 5-6 inches over heat. Remove when skin blisters.

Once blistered the chilies can either be peeled or frozen for later use. Freezing the chilies makes removing the skin a little easier.

Green Chili Sauce on Enchiladas

Green Chili Sauce on Enchiladas

Once the chilies have been blistered and the skin removed, dice them and the tomatillos. Add olive oil to a saute pan over medium/medium high heat. Once the oil is hot, add the chilies, tomatillos, salt, pepper and cayenne. Stir and chop with a flat headed spoon over for 5-6 minutes. Remove from heat and serve. The sauce can be kept in the refrigerator for up to a week in a sealed container.

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (No Ratings Yet)
Loading...

Image | WordPress Themes