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For Spinach Lovers: Spinach and Herb Quiche

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Spinach Quiche 1Quiche has become a dish that spans the seasons. Cool-weather herbs such as minced fresh dill and parsley give this recipe for Spinach and Herb Quiche a flavorful edge, along with some medium-sharp cheddar cheese to boost the mild flavor of Muenster cheese. I do love gruyère in quiche, but this was supper for people who didn't want to make an extra run to the store! We served it with a salad, but a cup of warm tomato soup or platter of fresh fruit would have been good accompaniments. The recipe makes a large quiche, or two smaller ones. We had enough left over for lunches the next day. Also, spinach is good for you - so this quiche has plenty! Use a ready-made crust or crusts, or do one up quickly using the easy-to-remember 3-2-1 formula -- three parts flour, two parts fat and 1 part water -- or however much ice water you need to bring the dough together. If you're using a homemade crust, put it in the oven to bake "blind" for a few minutes or so before adding the filling. Spinach and Herb Quiche Pastry dough to cover bottom and sides of a large pie or other type of baking dish 1 (10-ounce) box frozen spinach, or 1 1/2 cups well-drained and chopped fresh spinach, one large bunch (use hands to squeeze it dry; also, don't fully cook fresh spinach -- cook just to wilted stage. 5 eggs, beaten 2 cups milk or mixture of milk and half-and-half 1 cup grated or chopped cheese (I used finely chopped Muenster and cheddar, in about equal portions) 1 teaspoon fresh, minced dill 1 teaspoon fresh minced parsley 1/2 teaspoon fresh minced thyme 1 tablespoon finely chopped onion 1/2-3/4 teaspoon salt, or to taste 1 pinch white pepper 1/4 teaspoon grated nutmeg, or a little more if you like the flavor 3 dashes Tabasco sauce   Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Put the frozen spinach in a cooking pot with water and heat gently until it falls apart. When it has cooked for a couple of minute, drain it well, rinse with cool water so that you can squeeze it well with your hands. You want as little water left as possible. If using fresh spinach, steam it just to the wilting stage, then cool it and squeeze dry. While the spinach is cooking, place pastry dough at the bottom of a large pie pan or a casserole.  Prick the bottom of the crust with a fork, put in oven to bake until it has just become slightly firm but not browned. Take out to cool as you prepare filling. For the filling: Beat eggs well, add milk and beat to combine. Add the cheese and all the rest of the ingredients, the herbs, onion, salt and pepper, nutmeg and Tabasco sauce. Blend together well, then pour into the crust, or crusts, if you're making two smaller quiches. (we made one to eat, one to freeze.) Set pan in the oven on a middle rung and let it bake until the top is set, or just wiggles a little in the center when lightly shaken. At least a half-hour, or longer if you are making one large quiche. Set on the top of the stove and let if cool and set for awhile, 5-10 minutes, as it will cut better this way. Makes 1 large or 2 smaller quiches From Bonnie Walker    
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