With a record high of 114 degrees today, I’ve decided to forgo my late-morning walk and midday backyard gardening. With the air-conditioning cranked on high, I’m retreating to my kitchen instead. My friends think I’m crazy to bake on a scorcher like today, but as longer as I keep the A/C to oven temp ratio just so, it becomes a normal baking day just like any other – and the ideal opportunity to whip up something special like this brunch classic – with a hash brown twist.
Quiche with hash brown crust
A flavorful savory addition to any brunch buffet and a great way to use up leftover meat and veggies; Also tasty for dinner with a lightly dressed salad.
- 3 cups frozen shredded hash browns, thawed and blotted dry with paper towels
- 4 Tablespoons melted butter
- pinch nutmeg
- 1 cup meat such as bacon, ham, or chicken (I used sweet Italian sausage)
- 1 ½ cups vegetables, thawed if frozen (I used frozen artichoke hearts and spinach)
- 1 cup cheese, divided (I used mozzarella)
- 4 large eggs
- ½ cup half-and-half
- 1 (rounded) Tablespoon chopped fresh thyme
- Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. In a bowl, toss hash browns, butter, nutmeg, salt and pepper until combined. Press in the bottom and up the sides of a 9” pie plate to form a crust. Bake for 25-30 minutes until crust begins to turn golden brown and crisp along the edges. Remove from oven and gently press on crust to compact slightly (I use the bottom of a glass or measuring cup). Let cool for 5 minutes. Reduce oven to 350 degrees F.
- Meanwhile, in a large pan, sauté meat until beginning to brown. Add vegetables and sauté until all moisture has evaporated and meat is cooked through. Let cool for 5 minutes and then arrange on top of crust. Cover with half the cheese.
- In a bowl, beat eggs with half-and-half. Add thyme and season with salt and pepper. Pour egg mixture over meat and vegetables.
- Bake in a 350 degree oven for 15 minutes. Sprinkle with remaining cheese and continue baking for 10-15 minutes until top is set and egg mixture is slightly wet when pierced with a sharp knife (egg will continue to cook). Cool 5 minutes, slice and serve plain, with tomato sauce or guacamole.