Linda explores food facts, folklore, and fabulous recipes, one ingredient at a time.
I Love Breakfast!
I've never been much of a pancakes or waffles type of gal. French toast is acceptable if it's not too sweet (please no fruit toppings), and if there is plenty of creamy Irish butter to melt on top. But give me eggs and a pile of hash brown potatoes, and I'm as happy as a clam at high tide.
I could eat that kind of breakfast anytime of day. Brunch, lunch, dinner—it doesn't matter. And that is exactly why I made this quiche. All of us are in serious need of comfort food! The Midwest has been frozen for months, the Eastern seaboard has just been hammered by blizzard conditions, parts of California seem destined to wash away into the ocean, and here in the Pacific Northwest we have accumulated a year's worth of rainfall in just 4 1/2 months. (Just today I spotted a slug climbing up the window in my breakfast nook. When even the slugs are seeking higher ground, you know you have a problem!)
"When you wake up in the morning, Pooh," said Piglet at last, "what's the first thing you say to yourself?"
"What's for breakfast?" said Pooh. "What do you say, Piglet?"
"I say, I wonder what's going to happen exciting today?" said Piglet.
Pooh nodded thoughtfully. "It's the same thing," he said.
— A.A. Milne
|Prep time||Cook time||Ready in||Yields|
1 hour 15 min
- Large mixing bowl
- Measuring spoons
- Dry and liquid measuring cups
- Sharp knife for mincing rosemary and slicing vegetables
- Plastic (saran) wrap
- Medium-size skillet for sauteing onions and sausage
- Medium-size saucepan for precooking potatoes
- Colander for draining potatoes
- Cheese grater
- Parchment paper
- Rolling pin
- 10-inch deep-dish pie pan
- Wire whisk
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons fresh rosemary, minced
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- 3 to 4 tablespoons ice-cold water
- 2 cups Yukon gold potatoes, thinly sliced
- 1 small yellow onion, thinly sliced
- 1/2 pound breakfast sausage, (or see other suggestions below)
- 2 cups cheddar cheese, grated
- 6 large eggs
- 1 cup milk
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- In a large mixing bowl, combine flour, salt, and rosemary. Pour in the olive oil and stir gently with a fork to evenly distribute the oil. You should end up with little pearls of flour, about the size of peas.
- Next sprinkle in 2 tablespoons of the ice water. Stir quickly but gently with your fork, tossing the flour particles to moisten them with the water. You might need to add a third tablespoon, or even a fourth tablespoon of water depending on the humidity. Gather up the dough and place in the middle of a piece of plastic wrap. Bring the edges of the plastic wrap up over the dough to cover it; let it rest for 10 minutes. This will allow the flour to absorb the water and will also make the dough easier to handle.
- Roll out the dough between two sheets of parchment paper; carefully ease the dough into your 10-inch pie pan. Crimp edges as desired.
- Fill a medium-size saucepan with water; bring to a boil over medium heat. Carefully place the Yukon potato slices into the boiling water; turn the heat down to simmer and cook for about 5 minutes or until easily pierced with a knife. Drain and set aside to cool slightly.
- While the potato slices are simmering, heat a large sauté pan over medium heat. Add the onion and breakfast sausage to the pan. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the sausage has lost its pink color and the onions begin to brown. Remove from heat and set aside.
- Place one cup of the grated cheese in the bottom of the pastry-lined dish. Add one half of the potatoes and then the sausage-onion mixture. Top with the remaining potatoes and then the remaining grated cheese.
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
- Whisk together the eggs and milk. Pour over the potato-sausage filling in the pan. Bake quiche in upper-third of preheated oven for 30 minutes. Move to lower third of oven and bake an additional 5 to 10 minutes or until eggs are done (a wooden pick inserted in the middle will come out clean),
- Remove quiche from oven; let sit 10 minutes before serving.
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What Makes This Recipe Work?
- Olive oil makes a pastry that is easier to work with. It is also lower in saturated fat than lard or shortening.
- Rosemary provides an herbal "kick." If you don't like the flavor of rosemary, you can omit it.
- Precooking the potatoes ensures that they will be soft and buttery when the quiche is done.
- Yukon gold potatoes are the best choice for this dish; they hold their shape rather than collapsing into a mushy mess.
- Starting the baking in the upper third of the oven ensures that the quiche will cook thoroughly; moving to the bottom third of the oven in the final minutes puts the heat on the bottom crust.
Substitutions and Additions
Instead of breakfast sausage:
- Cooked diced ham
- 4 vegetarian sausage patties, crumbled
- Bacon, cooked crisp and crumbled
- Italian sausage
- Maple-flavored breakfast links or patties
Instead of Cheddar cheese:
- Smoked Gouda
- Monterey Jack cheese
- Sliced zucchini
- Oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes
- Black olives
- Diced red bell pepper
© 2017 Linda Lum