What I'm Cooking This Weekend . . .

Spring means tender asparagus, sweet onions and the chance to make this delightful Asparagus & Vidalia Onion Quiche. The truly lovely part of this dish is that it can be served warm or room temperature, (I've been Know to eat a slice straight out of the refrigerator). I also love the fact that I can use whatever cheese I have on hand. Add a tossed green salad and a bright vinaigrette-and Dinner Is Served.

Happy Spring & Keep Cooking!

Chef Jenn



Asparagus & Vidalia Onion Quiche


Nothing says Spring with more flavor than a creamy quiche made with the first asparagus of the year, nestled in a bed of sweet Vidalia onions and sharp Swiss cheese.


Recipe by Jennifer Hill Booker

Yields about 8 servings


Ingredients:

Crust

1½ cups all-purpose flour

½ teaspoon salt

8 tablespoons cold unsalted butter or lard, cut into ½-inch cubes

4 tablespoons ice cold water







Filling

4 tablespoon unsalted butter

4 tablespoons olive oil

2 large Vidalia onions, thinly sliced, about 4 cups

Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste

½ pound fresh thin green asparagus, trimmed and cut into 2-inch pieces

½ pound fresh thin white asparagus, trimmed and cut into 2-inch pieces

1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves


Custard

8 large eggs, room temperature

2 cups heavy cream

1 cup Gruyere cheese, shredded

1tablespoon all-purpose flour

½ teaspoon salt

½ teaspoon freshly ground pepper


Directions:

For the Crust:

Add the flour, salt and the cold butter in the bowl of a food processor; pulse until the mixture resembles coarse meal, about 2 minutes.

While the motor is running, slowly add the cold water 1 tablespoon at a time. Pulse until the dough just starts to hold together, about 30 seconds; careful not to over process.

Remove the dough and press into a flat disk and wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes to overnight before using.


Preheat the oven to 400* F.

Roll out the chilled pastry dough between two pieces of parchment paper; into a 10” round.

Remove the parchment paper, drape the dough over the rolling pan and transfer to a 9” fluted tart pan.

Undrape the dough over the pan and press it lightly onto the bottom and sides of the pan; trimming and discarding any extra dough that spills over the top of the tart pan.

Prick the bottom of the dough all over with a fork, line with parchment paper and pie weights or dried beans. NOTE: once the dried beans are used they cannot be eaten.

Place on a baking sheet and blind bake for 10 minutes. This will keep the crust from shrinking from the sides of the pan.

Remove the pan from the oven, discard the parchment paper and pie weights and bake for an additional 2 minutes.

Remove the quiche shell from the oven and set aside to cool.


For the Filling:

Heat a large sauté pan over medium heat; add all of the butter and half of the olive oil to the pan. Once the butter stops foaming, add the onions and season with salt and pepper.

Cook until the onions are very soft and begin to brown, about 20 minutes. Remove the onions from the heat and reserve.

Add the remaining olive oil to the same pan. Once the oil is hot, add the green and white asparagus and sauté for 5 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat, add the fresh thyme and add the mixture to the onions; stirring to combine.


Reduce oven temperature to 350*F.


For the Custard:

In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, cream, and 1 tablespoon of flour until well combined. Stir in the grated cheese, salt and pepper.

Spread the cooled onion and asparagus mixture to the bottom of the quiche shell and pour in the custard mixture.

Bake for about 30 minutes, or until the filling feels firm to the touch.

Place on a cooling rack and cool at least 15 minutes before serving.




Adapted from Dinner Déjà vu: Southern Tonight, French Tomorrow, by Jennifer Hill Booker, © 2016 Jennifer Hill Booker, used by permission of the publisher, Pelican Publishing Company, Inc.




Chef Jennifer's

Cooking Tips:

#1

Plan your menu around your grocer's weekly sales ad. Your ingredients will be in stock, in season, and on sale!

 
#2

Shop, Cook & Eat Seasonally. In-season produce is fresh, inexpensive, and tasty!

#3

Cook Once & Eat Twice. Cook a double batch of dishes like soups, beans and chili-for those days you don't feel like cooking!