Always delighted when something new turns out better than you could’ve imagined, the taste and texture of this quinoa crust is one the best kitchen ideas I’ve come across in some time! A brilliant merge of concepts, with using quinoa for the crust coming from Donna Hay, and first cooking it as quinoa pilaf (adding a ton of flavour) coming from Chef Michael Smith.
Having made and posted on savoury quinoa pie crust before, they were made as mini. I wanted to try the recipe again as one large quiche, to see if the crust would work – and be as fabulous. It was! It is! It held together, tasted great AND had the texture of crust made with flour. If you’re looking for a GF option for quiche or other savoury pies – this is what you want to use!
Considered a whole grain, quinoa is one of nature’s only complete proteins from a plant source. It’s also gluten free, and can easily and very tastily replace any rice or grain. Make the pilaf the day before, serving some for dinner, and saving some for the quiche. When forming the quiche crust, spread the pilaf with the back of a spoon, it’ll be easier and a lot less messier than using your fingers!
My favourite quiche ingredients..? That’s easy. Asparagus! Cheese I might alter, depending on what melting cheese I have on hand, but I always include a bit of onion in the form of chives or green onion, both which pair fabulously with any egg dish. I added some chopped tomato to this recipe, but have also used ham or cooked bacon. Go with what you like, and what you have.
Much like the Italians do when making frittata quiche is another ingenious way to use bits of veg, meat and cheese you have in the fridge.
Quinoa Quiche with Asparagus & Cheddar
If you make quinoa pilaf and cook the asparagus a day or two ahead, this delightful, gluten free quiche comes together easily.
- 1 1/2 cups quinoa pilaf (or cooked plain if preferred) *make the pilaf ahead
- 1 large egg white
- 3 large eggs
- 1 cup 10% cream
- 1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon Freshly ground black pepper
- 1 cup asparagus pieces, cooked, cut in 1/2-inch pieces *prep ahead
- 1/2 cup grated cheddar cheese
- 1/3 cup chopped cherry, grape or Roma tomatoes
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped green onion or chives
- 1/2 cup cooked ham or bacon *extra - omit for vegetarian
making the quinoa crust:
Preheat your oven to 325° and lightly butter or spray your pie/quiche pan.
In a medium sized bowl, whip the egg white lightly, to break it up and make it easier to combine with the quinoa. Add the cooked quinoa and mix until combined.
Press the mixture evenly into your pie plate using the back of a spoon. Bake the crust for approx. 15 minutes, just until starting to brown.
Remove from oven and let cool slightly while you prepare the filling.
making the quiche:
Heat your oven to 325°F.
Crack the eggs into a large bowl. Add cream, salt & pepper, and whisk until combined.
Scatter the vegetables in the pre-baked crust, sprinkle the cheese over, then slowly pour in the egg mixture - do not go above the top edge of the crust. Carefully place in the oven and bake for 25 - 30 minutes until golden and set in the middle.
Let rest for a few minutes before cutting; great served at any temperature.