Fresh Spinach and Cheddar Quiche
Farm-fresh spinach combines with eggs, cheddar cheese, and creamy milk to make a beautiful meal to enjoy any time of day.
Don’t you love the month of May? Spring is in full swing, flowers are blooming, and gardens are beginning to yield the first fruits. Here’s a big thank you to our farmers who work to put food on our tables.
This month, I’m highlighting some local farmers and farmers’ markets in my area, and I’ll bet you can find similar products where you live. I’m starting my Bountiful May Markets series at Theis Farm and Market where I found some gorgeous, tender spring spinach that I used in my Fresh Spinach and Cheddar Quiche.
The Theis family farm dates to 1885. In April, I visited the location in Maryland Heights, Missouri, a St. Louis suburb, but there are two additional market locations (St. Charles and north St. Louis County). My visit was a bit ahead of their great selection of locally grown produce, but the plants and garden herbs were plentiful. I picked up lettuce, basil, parsley, and lemon thyme plants to take home, and so far, they are doing great on my back patio! They were reasonably priced, too.
Rhubarb was going to be ready the week after my visit, according to the friendly employee I talked with, and strawberries should be in the market in May. But there was some beautiful large-leaf spinach that was evergreen in color and had a sweeter note. The flavor was more intense than the generic baby spinach so often sold in supermarkets (and less expensive, too). So, I bought a bag and knew I was going to enjoy a quiche for dinner.
Remember when quiche was the “it dish,” especially with the ladies-who-lunch crowd? A classic quiche always works for any meal, and I love them because you can start with the basic recipe and then add whatever you’d like. Let’s get to cooking!
To make my Fresh Spinach with Cheese Quiche, which yields six servings, you’ll need these ingredients for a basic pie:
1 (9-inch) refrigerated pie crust
2 cups (2-percent) milk or cream
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon black pepper
Pinch of nutmeg
To the basic recipe (above), you can add your choice of meat, vegetable, and cheese. I chose the following:
½ cup shredded mild cheddar cheese
2 chicken sausages
1 cup fresh spinach, cooked
Optional fresh parsley for garnish
Directions for Fresh Spinach and Cheese Quiche
The thing about spinach is you must really clean it. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), germs can cling to crevices in leafy greens, and if you eat greens that haven’t been thoroughly washed, you can become ill.
I like to fill a large bowl with cold water and submerge the spinach for about 30 minutes. Then I carefully lift the greens out of the water and rinse again under cool running water for a few minutes. As you can see in the above photos, there's a lot of dirt on spinach, so don't skip this step!
The CDC says there’s no need to use lemon juice, vinegar, or produce wash when cleaning spinach. Just gently shake the excess water off and spread the cleaned leaves on a baking tray lined with a clean kitchen towel. Before storing cleaned spinach, make sure it’s dry and wrap in a paper towel before placing in a zip-top bag. Plan to use spinach within a couple of days for best results.
While the spinach is soaking, bring a roll of the prepared pie dough out of the refrigerator and set on the counter. It’s easier to work with when at room temperature.
Next, slice the chicken sausages (your favorite brand/flavor) into coins and lightly brown in a skillet sprayed with non-stick. Remove from pan and set aside.
To the same pan, add the spinach and cook until it’s completely wilted. Salt to taste.
Mix the ingredients for basic quiche in a separate bowl.
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
Time to build the quiche! Take the pie dough out of the wrapper and carefully unroll on a lightly floured board. If there are any tears, you can gently roll it back into shape with a rolling pin. Transfer the dough to your 9-inch pie pan and shape it along the sides. Prick the bottom a few times with a fork.
Arrange the cooked sausage pieces on the bottom of pan. Evenly spread the shredded cheese. If you don’t have cheddar, substitute with Swiss or even mozzarella.
Pour the custard mixture over sausage and cheese and bake for 35 to 40 minutes. The top will be golden brown. If you want to be certain of doneness, insert a knife blade near the edge of the pie pan. If it comes out clean, the custard will be solid all the way through.
Cool quiche on a wire rack for at least 5 minutes before cutting and serving. Sprinkle with fresh parsley to garnish if desired.
Can quiche be frozen?
Yes! It’s best to slice the quiche into desired serving portions, wrap each slice in foil, and add the pieces to a zip-top freezer bag. It should keep up to a month. Reheat the quiche in an oven (300–325 degrees F) for about 10 minutes on a baking sheet while wrapped in foil. Loosen the foil and bake another 5 minutes.
Quiche also can be stored for a few days in the refrigerator, so I typically never have enough left over to freeze!
My mom and I sometimes visited area tea rooms for Saturday lunch, including the now-closed carriage house restaurant at the Chatillon-DeMenil Mansion. Do any of you remember their restaurant? It had a delightful quiche luncheon plate. Today, whenever I take a bite of quiche, I remember those lovely Saturday afternoons with Mom. Maybe you have a similar memory of a special lunch with your mother.
Fresh Spinach and Cheese Quiche would also make a beautiful meal for your mom this Mother’s Day. Give it a try and let me know how your quiche turned out!
Here's another recipe for quiche
This easy recipe that features zucchini instead of spinach. As it’s a bit early for zucchini to be in season in Missouri, you could roast asparagus and swap it for the squash.
About the blog
Three Women in the Kitchen is an award-winning food blog offering today’s home cooks comforting, hearty recipes with a personal touch. The website also pays tribute to Deborah’s mother, Katie Reinhardt, and paternal grandmother, Dorothy Reinhardt (the “three women” in the kitchen). Whether you’re an experienced or a novice cook, you’ll find inspiration here to feed your families and warm your heart. Subscribe today so you won’t miss a single delicious detail.