Friday, August 2, 2013

Italian Sausage Quiche

Quiche is such a versatile dish.  You can use just about anything you like in them.  They’re great for breakfast, brunch, lunch, and/or dinner!  We made this one up over the weekend, using Italian sausage rolled into tiny meatballs, cheddar and mozzarella cheeses, onions, peppers, tomatoes, and various herbs and seasonings.  Give it a try!  Or make up your own and let us know what you came up with.  We make our own pie crust for this recipe, but you can also use a ready-made crust if you prefer.  Serves 6 to 8.

Italian Sausage Quiche

Ingredients for Pie Crust
1 ¼ cups flour, sifted
½ tsp. salt
1/3 cup shortening (chilled)
¼ cup ice water

Directions for Pie Crust
·         Put the flour and salt in a mixing bowl
·         Cut in the shortening with a pastry blender or your fingers until it looks like coarse meal
·         Sprinkle ice water over surface of pastry, 1 tbl. at a time, and mix lightly and quickly with a fork, just until it holds together
·         Shape into a ball on a lightly floured surface, and flatten into a 1” thick circle
·         Using a rolling pin, roll out with firm strokes into a circle, about 3” larger than the pan, dusting lightly with flour as needed, turning over several times as you roll it out
·         To transfer pastry to the pie pan - dust lightly with flour, put the rolling pin a few inches in from one edge, and begin rolling the pastry up around the rolling pan
·         Unroll the dough over the center of the pie pan and spread evenly over the edges
·         Trim the pastry until it only hangs about 1” over the edge of the pie pan
·         Fold and crimp the edges, then refrigerate for about 30 minutes
·         Heat oven to 425°
·         Prick bottom and sides of the crust with a fork several times, lay a large piece of wax paper over the crust and fill with rice or died beans (keeps crust from shrinking – we use pie weights, which you can purchase at any good kitchen store)
·         Bake 10-12 minutes until just starting to brown
·         Remove wax paper and rice/beans/pie weights
·         Return to oven, bake 6-7 minutes more uncovered then remove and let cool until ready to fill

Ingredients for Quiche Filling
4 eggs
¼ tsp. garlic powder
½ tsp. dried tarragon
¼ tsp. ground black pepper
2 tsp. sherry
3 tbl. half-and-half cream
1 tbl. fresh parsley, chopped
1 tbl. sour cream
2 tbl. olive oil
1/3 lb. Italian sausage (skins removed), rolled into marble-sized meatballs
1 tbl. butter
4 oz. mushrooms, peeled, stems removed, and thinly sliced
2 medium Cubanelle peppers, coarsely chopped
½ medium bell pepper (red or green), coarsely chopped
5 green onions, thinly sliced (use some of the green part, too)
1 large plum tomato, sliced
1 cup grated mozzarella cheese
1 cup grated cheddar cheese

Directions for Quiche Filling
·         Whisk together the eggs, garlic powder, tarragon, black pepper, sherry, half-and-half, parsley, and sour cream
·         Heat the olive oil in a skillet over medium heat and add the sausage meatballs, cooking and stirring about 5 minutes until lightly browned
·         Remove the meatballs from the pan and drain on paper towels (reserve the pan drippings)
·         Add the butter to the skillet and melt, then add the mushrooms, peppers and onions and increase heat to high
·         Cook the veggies about 7-8 minutes, stirring often, until they are tender
·         Remove from heat and allow to cool
·         Sprinkle the bottom of the pre-cooked pie crust with the Parmesan cheese
·         Pour the onion-pepper-mushroom mixture and the meatballs into the pie crust and sprinkle with half of the cheddar and mozzarella cheeses
·         Pour the egg mixture into the pie crust evenly over everything
·         Top with the remaining cheese, then the tomato slices
·         Bake at 360° for 45 minutes to an hour, until it sets up well
·         Allow to cool slightly before slicing and serving
Slice it up an enjoy!


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