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Quiche TLC

Quiche is easy to assemble, economical, delicious, and extremely versatile. It is “fair game” for any meal, at any time of day. It should be a part of every low-carber’s cooking repertoire!

Quiche is basically just a savory custard which is baked in the shape of a pie, with various added ingredients, usually (but not always) including cheese, cooked meat, and vegetables. This makes it an ideal dish in which to use up leftovers! In fact, I often make twice as much as I need for a meat-and-veggie meal, on purpose, knowing full well that the leftovers can be efficiently transformed the next night in a quiche which will seem like an entirely different meal. “Real Women” (and men) just don’t have time to reinvent the wheel every night; anytime that I can cook two meals at once, I consider myself blessed.

BASIC QUICHE

  • 2 cups cream – any style works – nutritional counts based on half-and-half
  • 4 eggs
  • Salt and Pepper
  • 1 to 2 cups cooked chopped meat and/or vegetables
  • 1 to 2 cups shredded cheese – typical “classic” quiches almost always specify swiss cheese, but you can use anything you like. I usually prefer to use 1/2 cup grated Parmesan (the real stuff please, grated freshly off a block and not simply poured out a green can) and 1 cup mixed, shredded other cheeses. Occasionally, I use some cream cheese or even feta, goat, cottage, bleu, or ricotta.

PREPARATION: Scatter the chopped filling ingredients and cheeses into a well-greased pan, no need for any crust, and pour the well-beaten egg and cream mixture over the top.

Bake at 425 F for 15 minutes, then lower the heat to 350 and bake another 30 minutes, until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean.

Allow to set out at room temperature for 5-10 minutes before serving.

*Reduce the cream a little when using moist filling ingredients, such as canned or frozen vegetables.

I figure 8 servings per quiche – assuming (for example) you used 1-1/2 cups shredded cheddar, 1 cup chopped cooked broccoli, and 1 cup (5 oz) chopped cooked chicken while following the above guide, each serving would then equal: 240 calories, 18 g fat (9 sat), 4 g carb, 16 g protein.

Here are some of my favorite variations on this theme; follow the same basic assembly and cooking instructions and customize to your heart’s content!

GARDEN QUICHE

  • 3/4 cup diced unpeeled zucchini (1 small)
  • 3/4 cup minced red bell pepper (1 medium)
  • 1/2 cup sliced fresh mushrooms
  • 1 Tb. grated white onion
  • 4 oz. (1 cup) shredded extra-sharp white cheddar
  • 4 oz. cream cheese, cubed
  • 4 eggs
  • 1-1/2 cups cream

8 servings: 211 calories, 17 g fat (9 sat), 5 g carbohydrate, 9 g protein, each.

FLORENTINE QUICHE

  • 10 oz. frozen chopped spinach, drained thoroughly (about 1 cup)
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 cup diced Swiss cheese
  • 1 cup chopped cooked ham or 1/3 cup cooked, crumbled bacon
  • 2 Tb. minced onion, sautéed in 1 Tb. oil or butter (or cooked along with the bacon)
  • 4 eggs
  • 1-1/2 cups cream

8 servings: 210 calories, 15 g fat (7 sat), 4 g carbohydrate (1 g fiber), 14 g protein, each.

MEDITERRANEAN QUICHE

  • 1/2 cup pitted, sliced olives
  • 3/4 cup crumbled feta or goat cheese
  • 1 cup grated Parmesan or Provolone cheese
  • 3 garlic cloves, finely minced
  • 1 small Roma tomato, seeded, chopped and drained well
  • 1 cup marinated artichoke hearts, finely chopped and well-drained
  • 1 cup chopped cooked meat (optional but I like to use chicken breasts)
  • 1-1/2 cups cream
  • 4 eggs

8 servings: 228 calories, 15.5 g fat (8 sat), 5 g carbohydrate, 16 g protein, each

SEAFOOD QUICHE

  • 2 cans drained lump crabmeat or tiny shrimp
  • 4 oz. cream cheese, cubed
  • 3/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 3 Tb. chopped fresh dill weed
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tsp. lemon zest
  • 2 Tb. pimento 2 cups cream
  • 4 eggs

8 servings: 236 calories, 17 g fat (9 sat), 4 g carbohydrate, 16 g protein, each.

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