Swiss Chard Quiche with a Rice Crust

By • March 8, 2013 • 2 Comments

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Author Notes: Fact: quiche is delicious and well-suited to serving a crowd for not too much money. But when there's no butter in the house, when it's too warm to make short pastry, when the idea of getting out flour and a rolling pin seems like a monumental task-what then? Enter the rice crust, a gluten-free workaround that happens to be no end of delicious. A rice crust turns plain quiche into quiche meets fried rice meets tadig, that lovely crispy layer on the bottom of the pot. Not that ordinary butter-crusted quiche isn't delicious (because really, it is) but a change can be nice every once in a while.

The filling here is totally negotiable-feel free to sub your favorite greens for the chard, use your favorite cheese and herb combinations, add bacon (for the omnivores among us). Quiche is forever patient with our adaptations, and will gladly lend its eggy goodness to whatever fillings you care to use, provided they aren't too watery.
summersavory

Serves 8

  • 2 cups cold cooked rice (I like brown best; the version in the photo was with red rice, which is also good)
  • 1 egg, separated
  • oil (vegetable, olive, coconut, what-have-you) for the pie plate
  • 1 bunch swiss chard
  • 3 eggs
  • 3/4 cups milk or yogurt (full-fat; you could also use cream or half and half)
  • chopped fresh herbs (parsley is always welcome), salt, and pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup shredded or crumbled cheese (cheddar is good, parmesan is good, feta is excellent)
  1. Start with the crust. Turn the oven on to 350, and generously oil a pie plate. Mix the cold rice with the white from the separated egg and pat it into the pan, spreading it around as evenly as you can and covering the whole surface. If you have a deep pie pan you may need extra rice, but 2 cups should just about cover a standard 9 inch pie plate with a thin layer. Bake for 10 minutes to set it a bit, then take it out and let it cool while you make the filling.
  2. Next, assemble the filling. Boil a pot of water and remove the stems from the chard (you could put them in the quiche if you like, but I like to save them for pickling). Blanch the chard in the boiling water until it's just wilted, then drain it and let it cool a bit. Squeeze out as much liquid as you can from the wilted leaves, and then chop them up.
  3. Mix the 3 eggs, the yolk left from the crust, and the milk together with as much herbs and salt and pepper as you like to make your custard. Sprinkle the cheese in the pre-baked crust, then spread the chard over the cheese. Last, pour the egg-milk custard over the top. Bake at 350 for 30-35 minutes or until the custard is set. Let cool a bit before serving; it's good warm or cold. You may have to work a bit to get the first slice out intact, but if you oiled the pan enough things should work out.
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Photo_squirrel

over 1 year ago LE BEC FIN

I very much like your rice crust technique. And we have been enjoying playing with red and rainbow chard this winter, so this will be fun to try. I want to ask you why you prefer blanching to sauteeing (which to me is more flavorful, faster,more nutritious [you don't lose your vitamins to the boiling water] and uses alot less energy.) I'll saute the chard with garlic and add sauteed onions to your rice when I make your clever recipe, and I also will probly add some sunflower seeds and wheat germ for texture and added nutrition.(My Cheap Feasts recipe for Multigrain Brown Rice Au Gratin is similar to yours as a kind of 'rice quiche' so it's fun to think of all the variations possible! Thanks much for the inspiration.

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over 1 year ago summersavory

Thanks! I went with blanching in this case I guess because my goal was to get water out of the leaves, and I found I could do that a bit faster with blanching them and squeezing them out than waiting for liquid to cook off in a saute pan, but I'm sure that would work just as well. With blanching the greens, I've also sometimes used some the of the liquid that gets squeezed out in place in the custard, mixing it with cream to make up the 3/4 cup of liquid so you still get the dairy richness but save a little more of the greens' flavor. Let me know how your version works out!