This weekend I picked the very first zucchini of the season. Three whole zucchini!
Clearly not enough for a family of five, but when a garden starts producing, it usually happens in fits and starts: one spring day you look out the window and notice with joy the first blossom. Then come the first handful of fruits. And before you know it, the garden is producing more than your family can eat! The first tender spring vegetables always taste the best: they're proof that the plants are thriving, and that we can finally say goodbye to winter fare.
Those three zucchini, combined with other spring vegetables from the garden, were enough to make a quiche, which is our favorite way to use spring vegetables, besides the usual pasta primavera (and even an Italian sometimes tires of pasta). When the other week I posted on Instagram an image of a spring quiche with "pompoms", as Rebecca called chives blossoms, I was asked for a recipe. Although there isn't a real recipe for quiche primavera, here are some indications:
extra virgin olive oil pie crust:
- 250 gr flour
- 70-80 gr oil
- hot water as needed, about 50 gr
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
Mix the ingredients, kneed, and let the dough rest for at least 30 minutes at room temperature before rolling it out.
A word on olive oil: I have almost entirely substituted butter with olive oil in the kitchen, and each time I write this, someone will point out how butter, and animal fats, are good for you too. True, but if one eats a varied "omnivore" diet (which we do), then you will get your intake of animal fat mostly through meat. The main medical concern is that there is in fact too much animal fat in our diet, which is high in saturated fat and can lead to health problems. On the other hand, there aren't any health risks associated with extra virgin olive oil, just a long list of benefits associated with the Mediterranean diet (you can read more about this on Tom's site). So, in the kitchen, I use extra virgin olive oil almost exclusively, even when I bake, because it's healthier (and it tastes better, in my opinion).
filling: (all quantities are just an indication - use what you have available, and above all follow your own tastes to modify them)
- 4-6 eggs, beaten with
- ¼ cup milk
- ¼ cup grated Parmesan or ricotta
- spring vegetables (fresh peas, sliced zucchini, blanced borage leaves, but also chopped asparagus and scallion)
- herbs (marjoram and savory, "pompoms" optional)
Bake for 40 minutes at 180C. Serve at room temperature.