Plant-Based Busy: Mushroom Kale Quiche

The 1970’s were a compelling time for BIPOC, women and sustaining food trends. Vegetarianism, organic and macrobiotic diets were sprouting on the Left Coast near where I grew up in New Age, crystal tinged town. I wanted to become a vegetarian at age 10 when I somehow found out what hot dogs were made of. My father had been taught at Howard School of Dentistry that growing children needed protein so he forbade me to make the dietary change. Ten years later after fending off colon cancer, he too became a vegetarian. Now we know plant-based diets are the healthiest for us to consume, but how we incorporate the knowledge into a busy life can be challenging. So, I’ve developed a new series – Plant-Based But Busy (PBBB) to help us all get to eating in the right direction efficiently and with minimal effort.

Quiche gained popularity in the U.S. around the same time hugely popular in the 1970’s and 80’s, perhaps Julia Childs’ my childhood role model, had an influence, nonetheless it is an easy dish to make ahead of time as a dinner or lunch entree. I like to use whatever the farmers bring to my closest Farmers’ Market – this day they had kale and mushrooms – but most vegetables would work in a quiche except for root vegetables like beets, carrots or potatoes. Experiment with what is fresh and local because freshly harvested foods retain more nutrients and antioxidants.

Organic Mushroom Kale Quiche

Crust:

1 Cup Sifted All Purpose Organic Flour

1/3 Cup Spectrum Organic All Vegetable Butter Flavored Shortening -or- Organic Whipped Earth Balance Buttery Spread

1/2 teaspoon Real Salt

3 Tablespoons Cold Water

Mix the flour and salt together thoroughly into a bowl using a large spoon. Remove approximately 1/4 cup. Using a pastry blender or 2 knives, mix cold shortening or butter substitute into the flour forming pea size balls. Make a paste with the 1/4 cup of flour and 1 Tbsp. cold water then add that to the flour shortening mix. Blend quickly until the flour is moistened and can be pressed into a ball – overworking makes for tough pastry. You may want to place the bowl with the dough into the freezer for at least 5 minutes at this point to enable the rolling process. Roll out on a lightly floured surface to a 1/8 inch thickness and place in a 9-inch pie plate. Double the amount for a two-crust pie. Bake for 5 minutes at 475 degrees. Set aside.

Filling:

4 Organic Eggs

1 1/2 Cup Organic Heavy Cream (You can substitute non-dairy milks but the flavor won’t be as rich).

1 Cup of Chopped Organic Kale

1 Cup Organic Mushrooms

1 Cup Grated or Cubed Organic Cheddar Cheese

1 teaspoon Spike Seasoning

1/2 teaspoon Organic Thyme

1 Tablespoon Organic Butter

1/2 teaspoon Jane’s Krazy Mixed Up Salt

1 Tablespoon Red or White Wine

1/8 Ground Nutmeg

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Beat the eggs, cream, Spike and 1/2 of the thyme together until frothy. Melt butter in a frying pan on medium low heat. Add finely chopped mushrooms, 1/4 teaspoon of thyme and a 1/2 teaspoon Jane’s Krazy Salt. Stirring quickly, add the wine and let the liquid reduce. Arrange the kale, mushrooms and cheese in the pie crust and pour the egg mixture on top. Bake for 45 minutes until a knife inserted into the center comes out clean. Let cool and serve.

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