Butternut squash, bacon and sage quiche

It's been about a lifetime since I made a quiche - or so it feels. Each time I'm always pleasantly surprised at how easy these gems come together. Quiche is pretty much impossible to mess up. You can seemingly put anything you want in as well .... which helps to reduce kitchen waste. While those pros are all a bit utilitarian, a quiche is also the perfect thing to serve at a brunch for an old friend. Win and win.

In this event, I managed to pull this quiche together without leaving the house for ingredients which might be the true culinary victory. There are absolutely some lessons learned here for success and improvement but overall a success. The biggest difference here was the use of butternut squash. I never would have thought to put that in a quiche but it adds a nice and unexpected sweetness - plus more vegetables right? 

Here are some of my hints and notes:

  • CHEESE // In some odd twist, I did not have any Cabot cheddar in my fridge - but did have two containers of grated parmesan. Some cheese is normally better than no cheese, but I would really recommend using a melty cheese the next time (e.g. cheddar, mozzarella, etc)
  • CRUST // I continue to be a fan of frozen shredded potato. My friend Caroline first introduced this to me when I made this faux-quiche. I highly recommend keeping a bag in your freezer. The crust can be as thick as you want - or not at all. So do what you want here.
  • BUTTERNUT SQUASH // This was a real pleasant surprise. I was able to use the last bit of leftovers from this pasta dinner last weekend. So in my case, the veggie was already diced and slightly precooked. I think if you just diced the squash bits small enough (1/2 inch?) you wouldn't need to do more than tossing it in with the bacon skillet for a few minutes.
  • EGGS // I honestly never know how much egg you really need for a quiche, baked french toast, etc. It feels so hard to predict and varies based on how much carb or crust you are working with. In this case, I started with 5 eggs and then ended up adding the 6th just to be safe. Just use your judgement and personal preferences... it'll be fine. 

If I was eating by myself, I would have just noshed on this quiche by itself - but since I was having guests, I added a little more to the day. Just a light bowl of fresh berries and some fresh croissants that my mom delivered. The almond croissants were so good that I had a hard time waiting to eat them.

Here's how it goes.
(Step 1) Preheat the oven to 400 F

(Step 2) Gently press the defrosted shredded potato into the bottom of your dish. I used a 9 inch or so square baking dish. Put in the oven to crisp up. It'll be maybe 15 minutes or so. When you start to see a light brown color, pull the dish from the oven.

(Step 3) Meanwhile, add onion and bacon to a skillet over medium-high heat. Let cook until bacon is starting to crisp up a bit and get brown on the edges. Try to avoid letting the onion burn. You won't like that later.

(Step 4) Add the diced butternut squash and sage to the skillet and let cook for a minute or two more. 

(Step 5) Layer the bacon mixture into the dish and top with cheese. Mix together the egg and milk then pour on top.

(Step 6) Toss in the oven for 25-30 minutes. The time will depend on how "thick" your quiche is... and how brown you like the top.

(Step 7) Serve and eat!
Shopping List 
2-3 cups freezer shredded hashbrowns (depends on pan size)
6 pieces of bacon, chopped
1 small onion, sliced
5 sage leaves, chopped
5 - 6 eggs
3/4 cup milk
1 cup butternut squash, diced and maybe lightly chopped 

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