Thursday, March 27, 2014

Crustless Mini Quiches

Don't you find the mini muffin tins so cute? Something about the bite sized nature of the end result is very appealing to me.... and also can serve as a good portion control. But ever since i got these pans, I've been making quiches more often than mini muffins.... These mini-quiches are so easy to put together and would make a great addition to brunches or even work well as an appetizer. You could also make these on the weekend and freeze them so you have a tasty, portable breakfast to heat up in the microwave and eat over the week.

Unlike the other quiche recipe I've posted, I make these with no crust and i find them to be quite hassle free and it has fewer calories to boot. My kids love helping me make these and enjoy eating them as well. The recipe is quite versatile so change up the ingredients to make different variations each time.... I've tried spinach, mushroom and broccoli so far...  Changing up the cheese also adds a tasty twist.

p.s. I have no idea why I put a text saying mini muffin on the pictures... must've done that in a dazed state of mind.... :)

CRUSTLESS MINI QUICHES - makes 60 bite sized ones

Crustless Mini Quiche


Ingredients:

Eggs - 4, large
Milk - 1 cup
Cheese, shredded- half to 3/4 cup (I use a combination of what's available, mostly pepper jack, parmesan, cheddar  and  mozzarella)
Salt and Pepper - to taste
Mixed Italian Herb Seasoning - 1 tsp

Olive oil - 1 tbsp

Veggie of choice - spinach or mushroom or broccoli - 1 cup, chopped
Red Onion - half of a big one, peeled and  chopped fine
Garlic - 2 to 3 cloves, chopped
Red chilli flakes - 1 tsp


Suggestions:
Spinach & mushroom go well together and can be paired with a bit of feta cheese thrown in.
Broccoli will taste good with some cheddar cheese in the mix


Method:
1) Heat the oil in a pan on medium and toss in chopped garlic and red chilli flakes, once fragrant, add in the chopped onion and saute. 

2) Next add in the vegetable you are using with some salt and pepper to taste and saute until tender crisp. Set aside to cool a bit. 

3) Preheat oven to 375F. Spray the mini muffin tin with cooking spray. 

4) In a large bowl, beat eggs lightly and whisk in the milk, salt, pepper and italian herbs. Add the cooked and slightly cooled vegetables at this point alongwith the shredded cheese. 

5) Pour into the mini muffin tins and bake for 18-20 minutes (or until a toothpick inserted comes clean).


Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Updated Recipe Index

Hello everyone,

For ease of use, I have finally managed to update the Recipe Index page with all the recipes posted so far.... the drop down lists are pretty up to date and one can also search using labels.

Hope you find this useful,
Thanks,
Laavanya
 

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Mango & Greens Salad with Honey Chili Dressing

While I've often preferred adding fruits to salads (mostly apples/pears or oranges), this idea of adding mangoes to salads is something I picked up from my sister in law....  She made a really tasty arugula-mango salad when we visited her and I also got to know what kind of mango to pick. These are the red tinged mexican mangoes (which are much too fibrous when ripe) but in a semi-ripe state they have the right balance of tart and sweetness and make an excellent addition to salads.

For the dressing, you could go  with a store-bought one if you prefer and I favor the raspberry vinaigrette for this combination. But I also like to make my own which has a mix of sweet, spicy and tart flavors...  For the greens - arugula or mixed spring greens work great or even spinach.

MANGO & GREENS SALAD


Ingredients: 

Mango (red tinged mexican mangoes preferred) - 1 semi-ripe, firm to the touch
Mixed Spring greens - 2 to 3 cups 
Dried Cranberries (Craisins) - 1 tbsp, optional
Sliced Almonds - 1 tbsp, optional 

Honey Chili Dressing:

Olive oil - 1 tbsp
Honey - 2 to 3 tsp, to taste
Sriracha chili sauce - 1 tsp
Red pepper flakes - half tsp, optional
Lemon Juice - 2 tbsp
Salt, pepper to taste

Method:

1) Peel and cut mango into small cubes and put in a bowl with salad greens
2) In a small bowl whisk together all the ingredients for the dressing until emulsified - taste, and adjust the honey/chilli sauce/lemon juice. 
3) Pour the dressing over the mango and greens and toss to coat. 
4) Before serving top with the dried cranberries or almonds, if using. 


Friday, March 21, 2014

Cheese Crackers

My kids love to eat goldfish crackers and I found this super easy recipe here to give this a shot at home.... The good thing about making these crackers at home is that you can add seasonings of your choice to add some pizzazz and change up the flavors quite a bit - so I made mine a touch spicy.  These were particularly wonderful warm but do keep well for a few days in an airtight container.

CHEESE CRACKERS



Ingredients:

Cheddar Cheese, shredded - 1 cup heaped, 8 oz (I reduced the quantity a bit and substituted some of it with some parmesan cheese)
Unsalted butter - 4 tbsp, cold and cut into pieces
Flour - 1 cup
Milk - 3 to 4 tbsp

Salt - 3/4 tsp

Seasonings of Choice:

Crushed red pepper flakes - half tsp (optional)
Italian Seasoning - half tsp (optional)
Garlic powder - half tsp (optional)
Ground Black pepper - to taste

Method:
1) Pulse flour, salt and seasonings in a food processor, add butter cubes and pulse together until it looks like coarse crumbs. 
2) Add cheese and finally milk a little at a time and continue to run the processor until it forms a smooth dough. 
3) Wrap with some cling-wrap and refrigerate for about two hours. 
4) Preheat oven to 350 degree F.
5) Split the dough into 2 pieces and dust some flour roll/flatten out to about 1/8 inch thickness
6) Cut the dough into one inch squares (I used a pizza cutter) and poke a hole in the middle of each with a skewer - the kids were glad to help me with this step.

7)  Place the crackers on baking sheet lined with parchment paper and bake for 15-20 minutes or till golden. They will crisp up a bit as they cool.