Friday, 25 April 2014

Millet-Kamut Quiche (NO egg and just a dusting of cheese)

No-egg quiche. It sounds like an oxymoron, doesn't it? And honestly, it is! The generous amount of eggs and cheese in quiches (sort of an open pie)form a wonderfully gooey custard poured over flaky pie crust. Usually to bump up our nutritional karma, we would throw in a few measly bits of spinach and onion. But who cares? Every bite is swell. Agreed.
But let us talk nutrition here. Refined grain meal like all-purpose flour, which forms central to this, is stripped of all possible nutrients. Plain flour is plain bad (Don't say you don't count because you are buying unbleached. It may not have bleaching agents. But it is bad nevertheless.).
As a home-miller (Not sure if that's the right term. But I love to call myself that!), I had freshly milled kamut and millet flours handy. I threw in some corn meal and a handful of wholewheat flour. I cut the butter quantity to half and substituted it with oil.
So that's the crust.
The custard was simple - tofu, curd and fresh summer vegetables. But beware, tofu can emphatically makes its presence felt. I hope to come up with another recipe without tofu soon but till then tofu-haters have to hang in there. Sorry.
If tofu makes for a good thick custard-like consistency, sauteed vegetables give the much-needed crunch to the otherwise gooey custard. But there is no dearth of crunch in this quiche, seriously. Baked millet tastes like a decent multigrain cracker. In a good way, I promise.

Anyway, over to the recipe.

For Crust

1. Millet flour - 1 cup
2. Kamut flour - 1/4 cup
3. Cornmeal - 1/4 cup
4. Whole wheat flour - 1/4 cup
5. Butter - 1/2 stick (4 tablespoons), cold
6. Olive oil - 1/4 cup
7. Salt to taste
8. cold water - 3 Tablespoons

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 10-inch pie pan or an 9-inch springform pan (yes, springform! it is roomy enough to make delicious deep-dish quiches.).
Mix the flours, cornmeal and salt. Cut butter into cubes, add it to the flour mixture and pulse it in food processor or blender a few times until smooth. Add oil to the mixture and pulse a few more minutes. Gather the crumbly mixture into a ball by adding cold water and knead.
Since it has negligible amount of gluten, it obviously cannot be rolled thin like a traditional crust. So transfer the ball to the pie dish and spread it by pressing outwards with your palm until you cover the sides of the pan. Don't worry if they seem to fall apart. Just bind them together with your fingers. They firm up when baked.
Cover the dough with a parchment paper and add about a cup of dry beans over it to weigh down the paper. Bake it for 10 minutes. Remove the parchment paper and beans. Bake the crust for another 20 minutes until browned. Set aside.

For Custard

1. Onions - 1 medium, chopped
2. Garlic - 2 cloves, minced
3. Capsicum - 1/2, chopped
4. One cup of vegetables of your choice (spinach, carrot, corn, peas, broccoli or just about anything)
5. Parsley - dried or fresh - 3 tablespoons, chopped
6. Silken tofu - 1 block (doesn't matter. Even extra firm tofu works good).
7. Yogurt - 1/2 cup
8. Mozzarella - 1/2 cup, grated
9. Ener G Egg replacer - 2 (I know, you didn't expect this. But hey, you could use any egg substitute - like flax meal or apple cider vinegar. Trust me, they all work.).
10. Whole milk - 1/4 cup
11. Salt and pepper to taste

Blend tofu, yogurt, parsley and egg substitute in a blender until smooth. Heat oil in pan, saute onion, garlic, capsicum and vegetables until the vegetables reach their peak of brightness (for about 3 minutes).

Setting Quiche
Spread the tofu mixture over the crust, leaving about 1/2 inch around the rim of the crust. Add sauteed veggies, spreading them evenly over the mixture. Dust the quiche with 1/2 cup of mozzarella. Pour the milk over the quiche evenly.
Bake it for 30 minutes or until the mixture looks set or begins to brown.
Wait for 10 minutes before you cut the pies. Dig in!
P.S.: As soon as you wipe off your plates clean, come straight to this space and let me know how it turned out. I'd be thrilled to hear you :)