Paris rainy days

12 July 2017

I am not sure how to start. This is my first experience with blogging and I am doing it mostly to keep track of my recipes, wines and other family stuff that could be vital at some point.  I am an Australian living in Paris, France.  I am married to a gorgeous French man, Alex and we have 5 beautiful mouths to feed, Camille 15, Eloise 12, Nina 10, Luc 4 and Kate 2 – plus the cat Marvel. I have been living in France since 2002 and have some experience with feeding large families and making sure the food is healthy and wholesome.  Five kids makes food important and quite an expense in our monthly budget.  But it is one area where I refuse to scrimp and save!

We currently only have 4 of our 5 kids at home.  Camille has gone to Australia for the summer to do a road trip with my parents.  They are heading from Darwin to Perth where they will take the plane back to France to collect Nina who will spend 4 months making sure here English is perfect!  I haven’t been so good and keeping their English top notch.  My French is pretty good and I have invested a lot of time perfecting it to the detriment of the kids English… oops! We are rectifying that with time in Australia for each of them.

It is raining today in Paris.  It is school holidays and so 3 kids at home means keeping boredom at bay!  Alex is organising a home cinema for this afternoon while I prepare lunch.

Mushroom, spinach and bacon quiche – no cheese.

mushroom quiche

I don’t know if your kids are like mine, but cheese is not a favourite topping for the younger ones.  So as soon as you add cheese, it gets put in the yuck bucket.  This is especially true for Luc. So as he is at home, I am trying to find things other than ham and pasta or chicken and pasta that he will eat.  Also, when there is no cheese, there are a few less calories and who can complain about that?

I started this one by caramelising 1 onion.  I find that if you salt the onion in a good olive oil, this helps caramelise the onion quickly and without burning as it ‘sweats’ out water creating sugary juices.  To this perfectly caramelised onion, I add 500g of sliced fresh mushrooms and cover so that the heat perforates not only the bottom mushrooms touching the pan but the top ones too.  Once the heat is evenly through the mushrooms and they have started to reduce, I take the lid off and leave things until there is no mushroom water left.  In another pan, I fry 200g of lardons which could be swapped with bacon.  I cook this separately to be able to remove the excess fat from the meet.

When the mushrooms are completely reduced, I add around 100 grams of baby spinach leaves until they wilt.  Then I add the lardons, mix and let this sit and cool a bit.  Meanwhile I cheat with a pre-bought, pre-prepared pate feuillete (puffed pastry).  I buy one that is 100% butter and natural ingredients and the brand is Marie.  As it is already round, it is easy to prepare.  I prefer pre-cooking the base for my quiches.  I do this by putting it my round quiche tray (the pastry comes round so this is really easy) and using a fork, I put little holes everywhere and cook in an oven at 180-190°C for 10 minutes.

While the base cooks, I mix 3 eggs with 200 ml of cream fraiche.  Then it is the fun of putting it together.   First the mushroom mix evened across the bottom and then the egg mix poured on top.  After 30 minutes in the oven at 180°C it was perfect.  Even Luc ate it and complemented the chef!

You will need for this Quiche:

  • 1 onion in 2 tbsp good Olive oil and salt
  • 500g Mushrooms
  • 100g fresh baby spinach leaves
  • 200g lardons or bacon
  • 1 pates feuilleté (Marie) or you can make a pate brisé (I will share my recipe soon!)
  • 3 eggs
  • 200ml cream fraiche
  • nutmeg, salt and pepper to taste (I don’t use much salt and pepper because the kids don’t like pepper and I don’t like salt!)

I’ll be back soon with more from where that came from.