Summertime is supposed to be a season for relaxation - camping, swimming, tennis, outdoor concerts and catching up on all those books you've wanted to read. But too often we find ourselves rushing out the door, barely able to grab a decent breakfast or lunch. This summer I found a great solution. I keep a good stash of mini-quiches in the fridge. They only take seconds to reheat in the microwave and are perfect for a quick and healthy breakfast or lunch on-the-go.
I usually make a couple dozen at a time and use a variety of ingredients... some have sautéed pancetta, others have chopped deli ham. I change up the veggies as well - most have sautéed onions, others include bell peppers, spinach, scallions, chopped olives or corn. Some get a spicy shake of Tabasco or pinch of crushed red pepper and others are loaded with fresh herbs. Let your imagination go wild! Buy small quantities of various vegetables as your local farm stand or use up leftovers you have in the fridge. You also have a choice on cheese - choose classic Swiss or your favorite shredded cheese.
My process is quite easy. I sauté pancetta or bacon in a pan, then set it aside on a large plate saving the drippings in the pan to sauté onions. Although you don't have to sauté vegetables such as peppers, zucchini or mushrooms, I find that cooking them gives the quiche a richer flavor. As I sauté the veggies, adding more oil if necessary, I set them aside in different piles on the plate so that I can pick and choose various combinations as I make the individual quiches.
This recipe is very ‘forgiving’ - you will make between 18 to 24 quiches, depending on how much you fill them. If you run out of pastry dough, just cut circles from some sandwich bread or do without for more of a "frittata." If you run out of the milk-egg mixture, just mix up some more using a ratio of 3 eggs to 1/2 cup milk. If you run out of veggies, make some quiches with just cheese and herbs.
2 12-cup muffin tins
1 package Pillsbury pie crusts
1 1/2 cups milk
1 teaspoon dry mustard
Salt and pepper
1 cup shredded cheese
1/2 cup sautéed pancetta, chopped bacon or sandwich meats
2 cups assorted chopped vegetables, sautéed if you'd like
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Coat the muffin tins with cooking spray.
Roll the pie crusts to thin them and stretch them, giving more surface area to cut. Using a cookie cutter or glass, cut 3" circles out of the dough. Press the dough into the bottom and up the sides of the muffin tins. The dough will give a bit of a base to the quiches and does not need to come all the way up the sides.
Prick the bottoms of the dough with a fork and bake for 10 minutes until slightly brown.
While the crusts are baking, sauté the meats and vegetables.
In a 4 cup glass measuring cup, beat the eggs with a fork and add the milk, dry mustard and about 1/2 teaspoon each of salt and pepper. Whisk well to combine.
Put about 2 teaspoons of shredded cheese into each quiche crust. Top with about a tablespoon of meats, vegetables and herbs.
Carefully pour the egg mixture over the vegetables, to about 1/4 inch lower than the top of each muffin cup so it doesn't slosh as you place it in the oven. Top each with another pinch of shredded cheese.
Bake for 12-15 minutes until the egg mixture is set.
Let cool to room temperature then store, tightly covered, in the fridge.