Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Go To Meal #4 - Leek & Kale Quiche (aka She Began With The Best Intentions)

Mr Millie has school on Monday nights (yes, also on Wednesday nights as I said before) and he also has the big guys from his corporate office in all week, so he had to go into the office crazy early today (and the rest of the week) for meetings and such.  Why am I telling you this?  Well, this was supposed to be my swim day.  I couldn't swim because of work schedules and the dogs being left alone for too long.  Plus, with Bozley's injured ACL once we come home from work, we try to stay home so that they at least have some time with us.

This put me in a bit of a connundrum.  Tri training is supposed to begin today.  I can't not workout and set myself back even further than I already am.  So, I decided that I would work on my core tonight- something I can easily do at home.  {more on the Bob Harper Kettlebell Connundrum on the next post}

I decided that I would make a quiche with the Leeks I purchased at the grocery store this past weekend.  I found this recipe on Spark People  Now due to limited time and lack of some of the ingredients- My modifications are in parentheses


    CRUST:  ( No Time To Make My Own- I bought the Pre-Made Pilsbury Pie Crusts) I'm quite sure Mrs. Plant Food Fabulous  will have something to say about this one :) 
    1 cup whole-wheat pastry flour 
    1/2 cup pine nuts 1/4 tsp. baking powder 
    1/4 cup plain, unsweetened soymilk 
    2 Tbs. olive oil 1/4 tsp. salt 
    4 Tbs. olive oil, divided 2 medium leeks, white and light green parts chopped (about 3 cups) 
    1 lb. light firm or extra-firm tofu, drained and cut into 1.5-inch cubes - (I didn't have any tofu in my fridge, and since I'm a vegetarian and not a vegan, I replaced the tofu with 1 egg and 2 handfuls of  Italian Blend cheese) 
    2 Tbs. fresh lemon juice (forgot to add this one in!  OOPS!) 
    2 tsp. miso paste  (No Miso Paste either so I used Vegetable Stock)  
    1 clove garlic, minced (about 1 tsp.) 
    1 cup whole-wheat breadcrumbs (I used regular breadcrumbs, I couldn't find whole wheat ones at Target) 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil 
    1/4 cup chopped reconstituted sun-dried tomatoes, drained ( I have a sensitivity to Cooked Tomatoes, so I left them out) 


1. To make Crust: Preheat oven to 350F. Coat
9-inch springform pan with 
cooking spray. Pulse
flour, pine nuts and baking powder in food
processor until finely ground. Whisk together
soymilk, oil and salt in bowl. Stir in flour mixture.
Press into pan. Bake 5 minutes, then cool.

2. To make Filling: Heat 1 Tbs. oil in skillet over
medium heat. Add leeks, and sauté 8 minutes, or
until softened. Set aside. Bring large saucepan of
water to a boil. Add tofu, and simmer 5 minutes.
Drain, and pat dry. 
Whisk together remaining oil,
lemon juice, miso, garlic and salt in bowl. Mash in
tofu with fork. Stir in breadcrumbs, basil,
sun-dried tomatoes and leeks.

3. Spoon filling into crust. Bake 40 minutes, or
until crust is browned. Cool 5 minutes, then
unmold. Cut into 10 slices.


Number of Servings: 10

Recipe submitted by SparkPeople user NEWSUGARMOON.
Number of Servings: 10

Here are my leeks

You only use the white parts of the leeks, the green parts get cut off -  does anyone know what you can do with the green parts?  It feels wasteful to throw them away.  I'll probably give them to the bunnies outside if there isn't anything to use them for.

At the last minute, I apparently was under the delusion that I am Julia Childs, and I decided that I also could use the Kale that I had.

Now, since then I have learned that Kale needs to be purchased Organic- typically I buy most of my produce organically at Whole Foods or Trader Joes (and even Dominicks and Jewel have organic produce at a relatively good price once in a while) But when I bought this I saw it was $0.97 and just bought it, forgetting to check if it was organic- it wasn't)

:Sidenote:  I know there is a debate versus Organic vs Non Organic-  the fruits and vegetables you want to purchase organically are the ones in which you are eating the outermost skin-  so bananas, oranges, Pumpkins, Squashes - vegetables in which you don't eat the skins dont need to be purchased organically if you are trying to save money.  You should be most concerned about ingesting pesticides on the skin of fruits and vegetables you are eating.

I read that you need to soak Leeks and Greens to get all the grittiness out of them

So these were first doused in veggie wash

And then soaked in warm water.

I soaked them for about five ish minutes and then ran them over cold water in a colander.
After that, I put them in my Cuisinart and mushed them together. with the olive oil and garlic.  (This was probably my mistake with the Kale-  I didn't cook it first, I just pulsed it raw.)  Since this cooking experience, my sister, Mrs. Plant Food Fabulous informed me that Kale needs to be cooked down with some form of acid like Lemon Juice or Orange juice to get the bitterness out of them.

This is what it looked like after I blended them together.

I added  1 egg, a cup of Vegetable Stock, 1 cup of Bread Crumbs, and 2 pinch-fulls of cheese and stirred it all up 

Ater stirring it, I put it in my pre-made pie crust- put it in a 350 degree oven for 40 minutes.

Here's the Money Shot:

For the most part,  it was pretty good.  The Kale to Leek ratio was definitely off- as I could taste more bitter kale than smooth leek.  But the pieces that I got that were just leek, was actually really good.  So, my addition of the Kale pretty much ruined the dish.  So I would suggest that if you make this- don't try to be all Julia Childs like I did-  and just go with the leeks.

I also, after eating it, had a severe reaction to the Kale, which we have since deduced it was probably the pesticides I had a reaction to and not the Kale itself.  I will purchase an organic kale and see if it is any different.  After eating it though, my throat closed up, ears and throat began to fiercely itch and I had to jump in the shower just to rid the remnants of the kale off of me.   - which is why this is getting posted on TUESDAY instead of MONDAY.  

This will definitely be a Go To Meal-  I will most definitely use this one again, without the Kale.  Perhaps I will try leek and spinach- or I'll just stick with the Leek Recipe first and then figure it out from there :)

So, even though this specific one didn't turn out "perfect" I am marking this one in the success column.  I will most definitely try this one again.  And, technically even though it took forty minutes to cook, the prep time was super fast (ten minutes tops)  and I could stick it in the oven and do my workout while I waited for it to cook.