I am pretty sure that this week’s Demand-A-Dish was a success. I made the pastry last night and left it in the fridge to chill. I used my basic all-butter recipe, which follows. I learned how to make pie pastry decades ago – from my Nannie using lard. I learned again when cooking for $. And then learned again from the very wonderful ‘Pie and Pastry Bible’ by Rose Levy Beranbaum. If you want to get all neurotic, you can follow the RLB method. I love her cookbooks – don’t get me wrong. Her recipes are solid and her methods are, well, thorough and I have learned how to make so many things from her. BUT, I find that once I have made something a few times, I will develop my own methods and alter the recipes a bit. She is VERY methodical. On pastry, I use some of her tips, but not all. For example, if it is really hot or humid, or I have been baking a lot and the kitchen is warm, I will cut the butter and chill it in the freezer for a half hour or so. But really? Making pastry should not be that fraught with peril; at least, not once you know what you are doing. But if you are somewhat new to making pies and cakes AND tend to be a little hyper-organized and perfectionist (as am I), then you should check out her Pie Bible and Cake Bible. Can’t miss. So, anyhow, the recipe for basic all-butter pie pastry – the measurements given below will give you enough to make one 9-inch crust. Double it if you plan to have a top crust or lattice-top. Sometimes, I will add cheese, cream cheese, or milk to the recipe, depending on what I am making. Next time I get around to making pot pies, I will post the cream cheese pastry recipe.
Anyhow, back to the quiche-making. Rob opted for basil and tomatoes from our porch garden. I made a mini-quiche for the boy with bacon and cheddar. We also had skillet-fried potatoes and orange/pineapple Prosecco mimosas – ginger ale in the boy’s. Here is some pR0n of the results, and the recipes are below.
Tomato Basil Quiche with Prosciutto and Feta
- 1 1/4 cup all purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 8 tablespoons of COLD butter, cut into about 16 pieces
- 1 tablespoon cider vinegar
- 3-5 tablespoons ice water
Put the flour and salt in a food processor and pulse ’til combined. Add the butter pieces and pulse ’til all combined and has a cornmeal texture. Add the cider vinegar. Pulse repeatedly while drizzling in ice water. When dough starts to form clumps, stop adding water. Check the dough – if it will stick together, it is done. Even if it looks all crumbly. Spread cling film on the counter. Dump dough onto cling film and quickly shape into flat disc about 5 or so inches across. Wrap up the dough with the cling film and refrigerate for at least an hour. Preheat your oven to 375. Roll the dough out and blind bake for about 25 minutes in a 9 inch dish.
- 6 large eggs
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 1 teaspoon salt
- fresh grated nutmeg
- ground pepper to taste
- 5 ounces crumbled feta (I used feta because of the excess moisture in tomatoes; with other veg, I would use grated cheese or a softer cheese)
- 3 roma tomatoes, diced
- fresh basil, finely chopped, however much you want
- about 2 or 3 slices of prosciutto, chiffonaded and pan-fried ’til crispy (pancetta, bacon, etc. are also good)
Beat eggs and cream, add the rest of the ingredients and mix just ’til combined. Pour into the baked shell. Bake 45- 50 minutes ’til just set in the middle. Take a handful of lactaid pills and ENJOY!