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I am a Creative Communications graduate, with a year of Culinary Arts behind me!

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Crustless Quiche

This recipe calls for:

1 tbsp olive oil
2 c. zucchini, sliced thin
1 c. onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
4 oz cheese, grated
1 c. tomato diced
5 eggs
3/4 c. milk
1 tbsp fresh basil, finely chopped (or 1 tsp dried basil)
Salt and pepper to taste

You will need:
Large frying pan
9 inch pie pan, greased

Pre-heat oven to 350 C.
In a large frying pan, being cooking garlic and onions. Once the onions are semi-translucent, add zucchini, and tomato. Cook until soft (approximately 6 minutes).
Transfer zucchini mixture into pie pan. Sprinkle grated cheese to cover mixture.
Mix egg, milk and basil, with salt and pepper to taste.
Pour egg mixture over the cheese (if you wait for the heat of the zucchini mixture to melt it a bit, it won't float to the top).
Place in middle of oven for 35-40 minutes. Poke with toothpick, if it comes away clean it is done!

Once the quiche was finished, it came out kind of runny. I blame the tomatoes... I think next time I would take out the "guts and seeds" (I hope you know what I mean, I don't know how else to explain the liquidy part) or strain it a bit.
Because I used Litehouse Freeze-Dried Basil (not the same as dried basil, with freeze-dried basil you use it as if it were fresh basil), when mixed into the egg mixture it floated on top and made it look really pretty. The flavour really came out, it was quite nice.
I would probably add more cheese in future, I love cheese.

This recipe had tiny room for improvement. The tomatoes made it a bit too runny. I read that you could also sear tomatoes after slicing them to keep the moisture in. Aside from the runny appearance, it still tasted positively amazing, and that's all that really counts, right?

-The Littlest Chef

Thursday, September 08, 2011

Egg Drop Soup

This is a chinese dish, also known as Egg Flower Soup. I found this recipe here.

I feel that this was a good choice to kick off my blog! It's a very simple recipe, and pretty easy on a budget.

4 c. chicken broth
1-2 green onions
1/4 tsp white pepper
salt (to taste)
A few drops of sesame oil

The recipe called for chicken broth, which I did not have. Instead, I substituted Knorr OXO chicken Bouillion Base "In-a-Mug". It was about $3.50 for 170 g. For each cup of water, add 5ml (1 tsp) of the powder. I found that this already has a lot of flavour, so if you want to hold back on the ratio, I don't think it would be a problem. The recipe called for 4 cups of broth.

When cooking I used a wok, but a saucepan should work just as well. You can add the (1/4 tsp) white pepper, salt (to taste) and sesame oil (just a few drops). If you are using the OXO Chicken Base that I used you may want to hold back on the pepper and salt.

The sesame oil I used was around $10 for 375ml. Sesame oil is very popular in asian dishes, if you don't have any on hand a good substitute could be peanut oil, for it's equally strong flavour.

If you want to make your own sesame oil the ratio is: 1.5 tsp of roasted sesame seeds to 1/2 tsp of canola (or vegetable oil) would be equal to 1 tbsp of sesame oil. Typically you would want to use canola or veg. oil because it has a very neutral flavour, where as olive would have a strong flavour.

When I was done the recipe I couldn't really taste the sesame oil, I may in future add sesame seeds instead (if you roast them first they bring out more flavour).

Once everything has come to a boil, I let it sit for another minute so the flavours really mix and come out before slowly adding the lightly beaten eggs. In a steady stream, add the eggs while stiring clockwise.

Now let me tell you, I did lightly beat those eggs, and I had a huge clump fall into the boiling water, and it just cooked into a blob of egg. So don't froth the eggs until they are foamy, but do make sure it's beaten.

The eggs will cook really quickly since the water is boiling, similar to poached eggs. My sister walked by just at this time, and told me it looked like soggy toilet paper.. Please do not let this discourage you from making this recipe! The eggs should become stringy. It really only needs another minute of cooking before it's ready. I used a chop stick to stir it, thinking it might be a bit more traditional, but I'm sure wooden spoons work just as well! I also thought it might help the eggs become very thin strings.

Once it's all done, remove from heat and then add the green onions. You really only need one or two stalks of onions. Cut thin, and remember: you can cut up the whole green onion, but nearer to the root it's stronger so be sure to keep that part thin, it's still an onion after all and full of flavour! I cut mine at an angle to make it fancy.

Although the eggs did startle me at first, this dish is very delicious! I would like to make it with real chicken stock sometime, and compare. I would also add sesame seeds to try and bring out that flavour more.

The eggs, although they may have looked kind of funny, did take on a similar texture to noodles. It was hard to tell that there were no noodles in this recipe. I thought this was very interesting.

The site I looked at for this recipe had variations you can look at. One that I would like to mention is minced fresh ginger root. They say to add ginger if you're not feeling well, as it is great for colds and the flu. I wanted to mention this one to give you a quick tip on peeling fresh ginger root (please do not mistake this for the pink pickled ginger). If you take a regular kitchen spoon, rubbing it on the skin should take it right off fairly easily, and then use a paring knife to get the really hard bits. You save so much more of the ginger this way, rather than using a paring knife the entire time.

I give this recipe two thumbs up!
I do have a picture, and I'll have to add it later, my computer is being funny.

I hope you enjoy this recipe, and I look forward to any future recipe suggestions you may have! :)

- The Littlest Chef