Sunday, June 28, 2009

A perfect early summer meal

This isn't so much a post about recipes, as just a celebration of a dinner made from local food.

First, steamed beets, sliced and tossed with butter. My sister loves beets so much that she believes butter's purpose on earth is to be combined with beets. Usually I make pickled beets, which is my favorite way to eat them, but for the first beets of the season, I made them Julie's way. They were sensational.

Next, a beautiful salad, with two kinds of lettuce and arugula, radishes and salad turnips. Dressing loaded with garlic scapes, and a couple of tablespoons of chopped parsley and dill from my herb garden.

Finally, a classic in my kitchen: "Spinach Squares." Also known as crustless quiche, and the basis for those little mini-quiches I made a few weeks back. (These are also great brunch food.)

3 eggs
1 cup milk
1 cup (or more - up to 1/2 lb) grated sharp cheddar
1 cup flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
as much spinach as you can procure
onion/garlic/leeks/etc. (I'd use one small onion -- use that as your guide for amounts of other things)

Saute onion (I had some lovely spring leeks so I used those) in 2 tablespoons of olive oil till softened.

I had one good-sized bunch of spinach, but could easily have used two. Also I have successfully made this with frozen chopped spinach -- a one-lb. bag works perfectly.

Chop the spinach and add to the pot with the onion. Let it just wilt -- don't cook it too much. Allow it to cool.

preheat oven to 350.

In a 9x13 pan, melt a tablespoon of butter. Tilt the pan so the bottom and sides are coated.

Combine the dry ingredients in one bowl.

In another bowl, beat the eggs, then add the milk, the cheese, and the spinach mixture. Carefully mix in the dry ingredients, then spread into the prepared pan.

Bake for 35 minutes.


Christine - Origami Mommy said...

I love beets too! Beets in butter...mmm. Great idea.

I make a crustless quiche too - it feels so much healthier! Although I think my version is probably quite a bit heavier, with more cheese and some eggs too. Do you have komatsuna there? I heard that it has more iron than spinach and I am trying to increase my iron intake. I prefer the taste of spinach though.

Tall Kate said...

Christine, I have never seen komatsuna, I don't think . . . Drumlin Farm does grow some Asian greens, but I don't remember that one from last year . . .

One of my sisters-in-law was visiting and she talked about eating lots of spinach for the iron. I was serving chard, which she didn't love raw, but when it was cooked, she liked it a lot. I'm not sure where it falls on the iron-content scale, though.