We start out together, but after about 1/4 mile, I signal him to take the lead. He is a foot taller than me, and has an easy, lopey stride that will allow him to finish the five mile race in 44 to my 48 minutes. This puts me in the happy position of regarding my newly 60 year old husband from several paces back, allowing me to admire the human to whom I am most attached.
The man I follow moves through the world with ease and unselfconscious confidence. He is the smartest person I know, not just full of facts and concepts, but also wisdom and people sense. He is the kind of leader who is in high demand because he knows how to handle situations that baffle the rest of us. There is no better father, brother, or son-in-law. Or husband. He’s a gem. And cute, too!
I am not person of prayer, but as I run behind the man I love, I say a silent blessing. I wish him happiness, love, and good health. I hope that he will be able to be active and fit for many years; that we can run this race together after his 80th birthday! I repeat the vow I made 3 decades ago, to take good care of him, as he takes good care of me.
You, my blog readers, know that I feed my loved ones mostly healthy food interspersed with occasional treats. This “quichetatta,” is a little bit of both. It’s a perfect, mostly good-for-us, slight indulgence for a couple of not-so-young runners after a race!
I mean this recipe to be a springboard for your creativity. A cross between a frittata and a quiche, it has the decadence of pie, without the work of pastry. I’ve used the bounty that is late-summer harvest, but feel free to substitute what is fresh and seasonal whenever the whim strikes.
The flour in the custard, with the panko and parm in the “crust,” combine to form a crispy base for this hearty pie.
Serves 4-6 as a supper portion, 6-8 as an appetizer or brunch element.
For the custard:
8 large eggs, preferably free range
1/2 cup whole milk
2 tsp dijon mustard
1 tbs. flour
1 cup grated extra sharp cheddar
1 tsp salt
For the “crust”:
1/2 cup panko
1/4 cup grated parmesan
1 tbs. olive or walnut oil
For the filling:
2 small or 1 large leeks, cleaned and sliced
2 small or 1 large zucchini
kernels from 2 ears fresh corn
2 tbs walnut or olive oil
1 tbs butter
2 tbs. heavy cream
salt and pepper
Preheat oven to 450°. Prepare the filling. Slice the zucchini into coins, 1/4 inch thick. Place on parchment-lined baking sheet. Brush with 1 tbs oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper, bake for 10 minutes. Remove from oven and lower temperature to 375°.
Melt butter in heavy, large skillet, add remaining 1 tbs oil, sauté leeks over med-high heat until they begin to soften, about 3 minutes. Increase heat to high and add corn, salt and pepper. Cook 4-5 minutes, until veggies begin to brown. Add cream, deglaze pan, and remove from heat.
Make the “crust.” Brush a 10 inch springform pan with oil. Sprinkle bottom of pan with panko and then parm.
Make the custard: Whisk all ingredients except cheddar.
Assemble: Spread leek/ corn mixture carefully on top of “crust.” Sprinkle with half of cheddar. Arrange zucchini slices on top of corn mixture, and sprinkle on remaining cheese. Now, carefully add the custard, pouring it evenly over the filling.
Bake for 30 minutes or until the custard is just set in the middle. Cool for 5 minutes, then use a pairing knife to loosen the sides and unmold the pie. You may use a large, serrated knife to separate the bottom and slide the quichetatta onto a platter. Serve warm or room temp. Reheats beautifully in oven or microwave.
sautéed mushrooms, corn, and cheddar
spinach, sun-dried tomato, and brie
sautéed kale and crumbled, cooked, sausage
Blog note: A huge thank you and hugs to all of you who have expressed concern and support about my parents’ health. It has been a very difficult summer for them both, but we are hopeful that fall will bring resolution to this round of cancer surgeries and treatments and that they will both enjoy a return to full activity and ease.