I hope I’m not boring you with breakfast foods.
Once upon a time, not too long ago, I ate cereal for breakfast (and often lunch and dinner) every single day. Rejecting the Froot Loops and Cookie Crisps of my childhood dreams, I favored more “adult” options; filling my cart weekly with a heavy haul of corn flakes, oat bran, cheerios, and grape nuts. A gallon of skim milk rounded out the trip, then I’d head home to restock my barren cabinets.
The cycle would begin anew.
I was like that all through college, and even some time after. I just couldn’t muster up the desire to do anything more because I didn’t care. Cooking was fun enough, but I liked my cereal, it was cheap, and – bonus – I only had to wash a couple bowls and spoons at the end of the day.
Or week or whatever.
But then, all at once, that changed. To be honest, I think I have Pinterest and Instagram to thank for the change in habit, because now I’m obsessed with overnight oats, yogurt parfaits, granola, hard boiled eggs, and the like. I feel better, happier, fuller – longer.
To the surprise of no one: there’s satisfaction in feeding yourself more than cornflakes.
One of my favorite breakfast foods to make, as established, I’m assuming, by a previous post, is quiche. Particularly a rich and well-stuffed one like this, with both vegetables and meat tucked inside so as to appeal to the tastes of the boy as well as myself. A truly versatile and forgiving dish, feel free to change this one up to suit your fancy. Sub vegetables and meats in and out as you please to make it something that you, too, would be excited to wake up for.
- 6 eggs
- 2 cups whole milk
- 2 cups heavy cream
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 (7.5 oz) pkg grated cheddar cheese
- Buttery Basil Oyster Cracker Pastry Shell (below)
- Bacon, Kale & Leek Filling (below)
- Set the oven to 325F.
- In a blender, combine the eggs, milk, cream, and 1 teaspoon of salt. Blend on low speed until no streaks of yolks remain, being careful not to whip a lot of air into the mixture.
- Wrap the bottom of the springform pan with aluminum foil as you would if you were making a cheesecake.
- Sprinkle all but ½ c of the cheddar evenly over the bottom of the pastry shell, reserving the remainder for later. Evenly sprinkle (hands are best for this) the kale and leek mixture over the top, separating individual pieces so there are very few large clumps. Sprinkle the bacon evenly over top. Gently pour in the custard mixture, then top with the remaining cheese. Reserving some for this use helps to nicely brown the finished quiche.
- Bake 1½ to 2 hours until the quiche is just a little jiggly in the center, or until it reaches an internal temperature of between 165 and 180 degrees. Serve warm or at room temperature.
- ~5 cups, but more specifically, 250 grams oyster crackers
- ¼ tsp salt
- 2 basil leaves, sliced into ribbons
- 1 c (2 sticks) chilled butter, cut into ¼" dice
- ¼ c + 1 Tbsp ice water
- In a food processor, pulverize the oyster crackers with the salt until a very fine flour is formed. Drop in the basil and pulse 2-3 times until incorporated.
- Place half of the dry ingredients into the bowl of your stand mixer. On low speed, begin incorporating the butter one handful of cubes at a time. This will take some time - don't rush it. Add the next batch only after the first is well-combined. After all the butter has been added, turn the mixer up to medium and beat for about a minute, until no streaks remain. Be sure to scrape down the bowl and the beater occasionally.
- Add the remaining dry ingredients and mix on low, just to combine. Press into a 1" disk, wrap in plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least one hour.
- Before you roll, please be advised that this crust is a little crumbly. Don't let yourself get frustrated. Dust the counter lightly with flour and roll the dough out 16" round. Roll over rolling pin and fit into a 9" springform pan, and trim the edges even with the top of the pan. Patch any holes or cracks with water and scraps, as necessary. Reserve scraps, rolling into a ball and wrapping with plastic wrap, and refrigerate. Place the shell in the freezer for 20 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 375F.
- After the shell is sufficiently chilled, line with parchment and fill with pie weights. Bake 40 minutes, until golden. Allow to cool on a rack, then gently remove pie weights and parchment. When cool, carefully patch crust - if necessary - with reserved scraps. Set aside.
- 6 slices thick-cut bacon, cut into lardons
- 1 leek, halved, and cut into ⅛" crescents
- 2 cloves garlic, smashed
- 10 oz chopped kale, stems removed
- ½ c chicken stock
- salt and pepper
- In a saute pan set over medium heat, cook the bacon lardons until crispy. Using a slotted spoon, scoop out the bacon and drain on paper towels and set aside.
- Drain all but one tablespoon of fat from the pan. Add the leeks and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Sweat until softened and a little translucent over low heat, about 5 minutes. Add the crushed garlic and cook 2 minutes more.
- Sprinkle the chopped kale over top and pour in chicken stock. Put a lid on the pan and let steam five minutes. Remove the lid and continue cooking, stirring frequently, until no liquid remains in the pan. It is very important that most of the liquid is gone so your quiche isn't so wet that it falls apart.
- When the pan is dry, remove from heat and set aside to cool slightly.