All the world is nuts about
What's in The Nut Gourmet
Opportunities abound when it comes to celebrating the holidays. Whether it's honoring long-standing rituals or creating new family traditions, you can easily find a reason to gather some family and friends together and enjoy a meal of tasty food and a bit revelry.
Concluding ye olde twelve days of Christmas is Twelfth Night that occurs on January 5th, though some historians claim the date is January 6th. The celebration is a joyful night of festivities complete with feasting and merrymaking. Though most Americans consider New Years Eve the final celebration of the holiday season, some may enjoy honoring Twelfth Night with this delicious feather-light quiche. Because this quiche is such a tasty delicacy, you might like to serve it several times during the holiday season for brunch or dinner. Most quiches are baked in a traditional pastry crust, but this unique version features an eggplant crust, making the dish more delicate and airy. Serve the quiche with the Garlic Aoli on the side, along with a tossed salad, steamed vegetables, a whole-grain bread, and hearty cups of Wassail.
TWELFTH NIGHT QUICHE WITH EGGPLANT CRUST AND GARLIC AOLI SAUCE
Yield: 6 servings
2 large eggplants, about 1 pound (450g) each
Salt and pepper
1 red bell pepper, diced, about 1 cup (240 ml)
1 yellow or green bell pepper, diced, about 1 cup (240 ml)
1 1/4 cups (300 ml) diced onions, preferably sweet onions
2 cloves garlic, minced
3 tablespoons water
14 to 16 ounces (300g) firm tofu, rinsed and drained
1 cup (240 ml) lightly packed, coarsely chopped spinach
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 tablespoons nutritional yeast flakes
1 tablespoon tapioca flour
1 tablespoon fresh dill or 1 teaspoon dried dill weed
1 to 1 1/4 teaspoons salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees (Gas Mark 5) and have ready 2 large ungreased jellyroll pans. Lightly oil a 9-inch (23 cm) deep-dish pie pan and set aside.
- TO MAKE THE EGGPLANT CRUST, peel the eggplants and cut them crosswise into 3/8-inch (1 cm) thick slices. Place the slices on the jellyroll pans, sprinkle lightly with salt and pepper, and roast for 25 minutes. Remove and cool 10 minutes. Then line the sides and bottom of the deep-dish pie pan with the eggplant slices, covering the bottom completely. Set aside and prepare the filling.
- TO MAKE THE FILLING, combine the red and yellow bell peppers, onion, garlic, and water in a large, deep skillet. Water-sauté over high heat about 3 to 4 minutes, or until softened. Add more water as needed to cook the vegetables and prevent burning. Set aside.
- Combine the tofu, spinach, lemon juice, nutritional yeast flakes, tapioca flour, dill, salt, and pepper in the food processor and process until smooth. Add the tofu mixture to the vegetables in the skillet and mix well.
- Spoon the filling into the eggplant crust, leaving the eggplant crust edges exposed. Smooth the top, and bake 40 to 45 minutes or until firm. Cool 10 minutes before cutting and serving. Cut into wedges and serve with a dollop of Garlic Aoli on top and pass the remaining Garlic Aoli at the table.
Yield: about 1 1/2 cups (360 ml)
3/4 pound (340g) potatoes, about 2 medium, peeled, and cubed
2 to 3 cloves garlic
1/2 to 3/4 cup (120 to 180 ml) potato water
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/2 to 3/4 teaspoons salt
- Place the potato cubes into a 1-quart (1 liter) saucepan with water to cover. Cover the pan and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat to medium-high and boil for 4 to 5 minutes, or until the potatoes are fork tender. Remove them to the food processor with a slotted spoon.
- Add the remaining ingredients and process until smooth and creamy. Spoon into a serving bowl and serve on the side.
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