Friday, January 24, 2014

Challenges & Quiche

I am the kind of person who likes a good challenge. For a while I was thinking of maybe moving to California or New York to find internships or continue my studies, which don’t get me wrong, are both incredible cities where someday I might like to live, but there was this weird pushy part of me that kept yelling “It’s too easy!” I felt this need to go somewhere that would seriously challenge me, teach me about different cultures, open up my mind, and from time to time make me feel as if I know nothing about the world at all.

And so I chose Tangier. Or, as they say, Tangier chose me. I’m not really sure yet.

This city is a constant, wonderful challenge. From using three different languages to simply buy some lettuce at the market, to losing my way in the maze of the medina and finding myself on a single-person street, I am always kept on my toes. It is both exhilarating and exhausting. I love it.

Another routine challenge is the ever-so-exciting process of using the flame spouting thing they call an oven here in Morocco. I tried to make a cake the other day which began with me throwing matches into the box of gas and ducking until finally it lit, and resulted in something resembling a bubbling brick that was black on the bottom and wiggly on top. Whoops.

I tried my luck again with this lovely little quiche, and was pleasantly surprised at the outcome. I'm trying to eat gluten-free lately, but finding gluten-free flour in Tangier is a difficult task. This potato crust is ingenius- you end up with these delicious crispy potatoes surrounding a fluffy eggy filling. I had a slice for lunch for 5 days straight and never got sick of it.

Potato-Crusted Spinach & Tomato Quiche (gf)
inspired by Sweet Daily

makes 8 servings

4-5 medium/large potatoes
1 tbsp canola oil
100g spinach, roughly chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
5 eggs
1/4 cup milk or unsweetened almond milk
1/2 onion, minced
1 tomato, chopped
1/4 cup minced fresh parsley
1/2 tsp paprika
salt & pepper to your taste

Start by peeling and thinly slicing your potatoes. Slice 3 of them into discs, and 2 into horizontal strips. Heat the oil in a large skillet and fry the potatoes for about 5-8 minutes, or until they soften and get a bit golden on the edges. Arrange them into a crust with the discs on the bottom and the strips on the side in an oiled 9" round pan.

Preheat the oven to 400º (although this is relative-with my oven there is no such thing as preheating or a fixed temperature).

Sauté the spinach with the garlic in your skillet where you cooked the potatoes until just slightly wilted. In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs and milk, then add spinach, onion, tomato, parsley and spices. Pour the filling into the potato crust and bake for about 10-15 minutes or until golden brown on top.
Let cool for about 10 minutes and serve.

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