“En papillote” or in parchment is a technique that I’ve tried a few times before for French Fridays with Dorie. Each time, I marvel at its brilliance, and then promptly forget it about it until the next “en papillote” recipe gets selected. Well, this week, we’re making Baby Bok Choy, Sugar Snaps and Garlic en Papillote. Once again, en papillote made me smile.
The recipe name kind of says it all. Spring vegetables are sealed up in foil packets along with some orange zest and sprigs of mint. One packet for each person is baked, allowing the vegetables to steam in their own juices, infusing with the orange and mint flavors.
I liked the combination of vegetables: the baby bok choy with the peas, baby onions, and sliced garlic. It was so lovely to enjoy fresh sugar snap peas. My only complaint was that I wasn’t completely sold on the orange zest or the mint. I might have preferred lemon and chives or thyme.
I served the veggies as a side to baked chicken with artichokes and couscous, but it would have been good with anything.
Hopefully, I remember this easy technique over the summer. We’ve got plenty of vegetables coming when our CSA starts up in June.
I adore anything made in a tart pan: sweet or savory. Hands down, the most used piece of baking equipment used in my kitchen is my tart pan. Quiche is a popular option. It’s a great way to use up leftover bits in the fridge. A pastry shell filled with bite-sized vegetables or chopped meat covered in a custard filling with a little cheese on top, and you’ve got an ever-changing series of options.
This week’s recipe for French Fridays with Dorie is the Quiche Maraîchère. A Google translation of Maraîchère says it means truck farmer, so we’re talking about a filling that honors farmer’s market style freshness. Not much is growing outside in my neck of the woods quite yet, but the filling for this quiche relies on vegetables that are at least readily available at the grocery store all year long: celery, carrots, leeks, and red pepper. I’m inspired to rename this Confetti Quiche based on the vibrant assortment of colors combined for this recipe.
I’ve mentioned it before, but I’ll say it again. I’m not a big fan of Dorie’s Pate Brisee. My go-to recipe is Mark Bittman’s though for this quiche, I tried out Maria Speck’s Whole Wheat Butter Pastry Crust (without the sugar) from Ancient Grains for Modern Meals or on-line here. The crust was a little chewy, but much better than other whole-wheat or spelt crusts I’ve tried. I don’t think I used quite enough water so overworked it, making it a bit tough. It is a crust I will try again.
As with Dorie’s other quiches, this one has a lower custard to filling ratio which I find quite pleasing (meaning, LOTS of filling bound together with just enough eggs and cream). The only complaint I had with the quiche maraîchère recipe is that, though we were encouraged to add as much custard as would possibly fill the crust without overflowing, the quantity I mixed up per the recipe didn’t even come close to the top of the crust. I could have perhaps doubled the custard to fill it up.
It didn’t really matter though. The end results was a feast for the eyes with all those great colors and for the belly too. We both really enjoyed this version of quiche. With a tossed salad, it made a light, but satisfying, dinner. Leftovers were good for lunch too.
Carrots and celery were vegetables I’d never thought to add to a quiche, so I’m glad to discover how well they worked. I will be making, if not this exact combination, certainly other versions that include these vegetable bin staples.
You can see what the other Doristas thought of this week’s quiche by following their links posted here. You can find the recipe online here, and, of course, it’s from Dorie Greenspan’s book Around My French Table, a book you won’t be sorry to add to your collection.