Think about it, my friends: we are on the hook for up to 365 dinners a year, minus a few meals out. Multiply that by how long you’ve been cooking for yourself and others and you get an idea of the magnitude of the challenge we face to keep it fresh and interesting. That’s not even talking about breakfasts, lunches, birthday parties and dog biscuits. It’s a miracle we don’t unionize!
This is all to say that I bet I’m not the only one who gets tired of the same old same old. My husband and I both like to cook but we also like a variety and surprise now and then. Today I’d like to share a recipe that is easy, looks great, tastes different and can be adapted easily. Naturally (because I am sharing it) you can trust that it takes very little ‘hands on’ time.
This is an update of a recipe I found in the original Joy of Cooking. I like mine better! I think it looks great, tastes different every time and reheats well (if there’s any left). I used old cheddar and havarti for this because that’s what I had, but you can use any mix of cheese you have hanging around. Of course, eggs save the day.
Easy as pie dinner
· 8 inch pie crust shell, purchased is fine (partially baked if you’re a purist – I’m not)
· 1-3/4 cups (425 ml) milk or cream (I used cream)
· 1 cup (225 ml) shredded cheese (whatever you have on hand!)
· 1/2 tsp (2 ml). salt
· 1/4 tsp (1 ml). paprika
· 1/2 tsp (2 ml). chopped green onion (green parts)
· Tablespoon chopped fresh parsley (or dried if you’re stuck
· A few grains of cayenne
· 3 eggs beaten (room temperature if you remember – makes a puffier filling)
· Optional: 6 oz bacon – in one-inch pieces, cooked (vegetarians – ignore this!)
· Preheat oven to 325 degrees (175 C.).
· Scald the milk or cream over high heat.
· Reduce the heat and add the shredded cheese, stir until melted.
· Add salt, paprika, green onion, cayenne.
· Remove mixture from heat and beat in eggs slowly.
· Scatter bacon on the crust
· Fill pie crust and bake it until the custard is firm, about 45 minutes.
How easy was that? And you can vary the seasonings to suit yourself! It tastes great and it's pretty enough to serve to guests for lunch or brunch too. I'm planning to try it with a bit of jalepeno next time. Gotta love eggs. By the way, it's perfect for a rainy day and around here we've had plenty of those around here lately. It's rich so all you need to serve it with is a simple, crisp green salad and crusty bread.
I need fast and easy recipes like this to meet my writing schedule, promote my latest Charlotte Adams book, The Busy Woman's Guide to Murder and have a life. I'd love to hear of any ideas you have for varying this Maffini family favorite.
The Busy Woman’s Guide to Murder: a Charlotte Adams mystery (April 5, 2011)
A Top Pick in April RT Book Reviews - 4 1/2 stars
Devotees of the classic mystery can do no better than this clever twister. The Globe and Mail
Now here's a little 'treat' for dessert from our own MLK gal Wendy Watson!
A Parfait Giveaway
In honor of the June 7 release of A Parfait Murder (the third Mystery a la Mode), which features a story line about the Lantana Round-Up Rodeo Queen Pageant, I'm giving away a little cowboy couture: a leather and rhinestone cuff, and a "rodeo queen" keychain.
Eligibility: This contest is open to everyone living in the U.S. and Canada. One entry per person, please.
How to Enter: Send proof of purchase of A Parfait Murder (either a receipt, or a picture of you holding the book, by e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. Put the words "Parfait Giveaway" in the subject line.
Entries must be received by 5:00 PM Central Standard Time on Friday, June 17. I will randomly select one entry, announce the winner on MLK on Saturday, June 18, and contact that person via e-mail. If I do not get a response within 7 days, I'll draw another name.