Monday, May 31, 2010

Quiche Florentine

It's a little cliche to post a quiche on a vegetarian website, but this one is light, fluffy and delicious. To make it uniquely French you should use Swiss or French Gruyere cheese. I tend to add a little Parmesan too. If you have the time, make your own crust. It's far better, and many store bought crusts contain lard.

10 ounces fresh spinach, stemmed and washed
1/2 cup minced onion
1 tablespoon butter or olive oil
3 or 4 eggs
1 cup milk
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
freshly ground pepper
pinch of nutmeg
1 cup grated Gruyere or Swiss cheese
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese

1 1/2 cups of flour
large pinch sea salt
6 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons of ice water

Prepare the crust by sifting the flour and salt in a medium bowl. Rub in the butter using a fork or your fingertips. When the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs, bind it with water. Knead lightly on a floured surface until smooth. Wrap the crust in wax paper and chill for about 30 minutes before rolling out.

Blind bake the crust in a 350 degree oven for 10-15 minutes.

While the crust is cooking, blanch the spinach in salted, boiling water. Drain, chop and set aside. Saute the onion in the butter or oil until crisp-tender. Beat the eggs in a medium bowl and the milk. Add the salt, pepper, and nutmeg.

In a large bowl, toss together the onion, spinach and the cheeses. Spread the mixture over the bottom of the crust. Pour the egg-milk mixture over the top. Bake for 30 to 40 minutes, or until firm to the touch.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Pesto with Green Beans and New Potatoes

Before I became a vegetarian I liked pesto about as much as I liked Brussels sprouts when I was 10. But times change. Pesto is delicious. And you can make quite a few variations on the basic idea. I've used this recipe a lot over the years whenever I find we have too many green beans in the garden.

6 small new potatoes
3 cups dried penne or fusilli
3/4 pound green beans, trimmed and cup into 2 inch lengths
4 tablespoons of Pesto sauce (see below)
basil leaves to garnish

Pesto sauce
2 tablespoons pine nuts (or walnuts) toasted
2 cups of fresh basil leaves
2 cloves of garlic
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Seven Essential Breakfasts for the World Traveler - Slideshow - World Hum

Seven Essential Breakfasts for the World Traveler - Slideshow - World Hum

Jenni isn't a big fan of breakfast, but I can't seem to get started without it. As soon as I wake up in the morning, the first thought that goes through my mind is, "What's for breakfast?" And it's no exception when we're traveling. There was the pain au chocolat and cup of coffee I had in a smokey Heathrow cafe on our first trip to London. The Turkish coffee I could stand a spoon in when we were staying in Budapest. The smorgasbord style buffet we had each morning at our hotel in Stockholm last fall. I remember those meals as much for the food as for what happened after they took my plate away.

Here is a link from World Hum. A great travel story website. On it they show you a few typical breakfasts from around the world. Not all are vegan or vegetarian, but that doesn't mean you can't change them to your liking. And remember what your mom told you, breakfast is the most important meal of the day.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Free Trip Planner and Personalized Travel Guide -

Free Trip Planner and Personalized Travel Guide -

Jenni and I are heading back to London in August. I was looking through NileGuides for some attractions we hadn't seen before. I've always been a big fan of guidebooks by Arthur Frommer and Rick Steves, and of course Lonely Planet. I have many scribbled up, dog eared and highlighted copies of well used, well loved guidebooks in our spare bedroom. Nile Guides extends that concept a little bit for the 21st century. They've curated information from sources such as Frommer's, Travel + Leisure, as well as content from their 'location based writers,' and serves it up interactively.' Nile Guides lets you create your own guidebook based upon where you want to go and what you want to do. You can print it, share it with your friends and family, and send it to your phone. You can even book your trip through them. And, of course they have an iphone app too. Best of all, it's free.