I can finally breathe, the stress levels have gone from 75 percent to lower than 20.
My thesis has been sent in, hopefully just minor corrections are left.
And I've been enjoying good food in good company. Quiche, crêpes, homemade bread, bite by bite.
This quiche makes me fall in love all over again every time with leeks.
Leek and mushroom quiche
Adapted from Martha Stewart and Julia Child via Smitten Kitchen
Makes one 9-½- inch quiche
Ingredients: Pate Brisee
1 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
½ tsp salt
¼ tsp sugar
1 stick unsalted butter, cold and cut into pats
About 2 TBSP ice water
To make the pate brisee: In the bowl of your food processor, combine flour, salt, and sugar. Add butter and process just until the mixture resembles coarse sand with some small pieces of butter. With the machine running, add ice water in a slow, steady stream through the feed tube. Add only enough so that the dough holds together, it shouldn't be wet or sticky. To test, squeeze a small amount together; it should just hold together.
Form the dough into a ball, flatten it into a disk and wrap in plastic. Refrigerate at least an hour, or 30 minutes then roll the dough out, place it in the pan you will be using, and refrigerate another 15-30 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 400F with rack in the center. Roll the dough out, working quickly, and transfer to the quiche pan you will be using (I recommend one with a removable bottom). Trim off the excess dough around the edges and prick holes in the bottom using ½-inch intervals. Line the pastry with foil and fill it with pie weights or uncooked rice or beans. Bake in the preheated oven for 8-9 minutes, then remove the foil and bake for 2-3 minutes more, just until it's starting to turn color.
3-4 leeks, white part only, sliced
½ cup water
3 TBSP butter
5-6 large white mushrooms, sliced
1 TBSP your favorite red wine for cooking
1 ½ cups whole milk
Pre-baked pastry shell (see above)
¼ cup Swiss cheese, shredded (I used Baby Swiss)
Preheat oven to 375F.
Boil the leeks in a heavy-bottomed, covered saucepan over moderately-high heat with the water, 2 TBSP butter and 1 tsp salt until the liquid has almost evaporated. Lower the heat, uncover the pan, and stew for 15-20 minutes or until the leeks are very tender. Remove from pan and set aside.
Using the same saucepan, add the remaining TBSP of butter to the pan along with the sliced mushrooms, ¼ tsp salt and the red wine. Cover pan and cook over moderately low heat for 8 minutes. Uncover, raise heat and boil for several minutes to evaporate all liquid. The mushrooms will begin to saute in their butter. Stir the mushrooms into the leek mixture.
In a large mixing bowl, beat together the eggs, milk and salt and pepper. Gradually add in the leek and mushroom mixture. Check seasoning and pour into the pre-baked pastry shell. Spread on the cheese. Bake for about 30-40 minutes until puffed and golden. Cool slightly on a wire rack before serving so that the quiche can set.