Chase the winter blues away with a colorful blend of your favorite seasonal veggies freshly baked in creamy custard and wrapped in a crispy chickpea dough crust.
These tasty morsels burst with flavor, are low in calories but very high in nutrition, being entirely plant-based and low in fat (no dairy, no eggs, no oils).
I love to visit my green grocer and select the freshest and most colorful veggies in season. The tiny tarts shown above combined Chioggia beets, purple sweet potatoes, red onions, baby greens and broccoli. They are CHOCKFUL of phytonutrients and antioxidants that bolster our immune systems, stifle systemic inflammation and keep our microbiomes humming. They're festive and beautiful -- perfect for breakfast, brunch or miniaturized into petite appetizers. And they're fun to make too!
Mini Veggie Quiches (around 24 mini-tarts or twelve 3" individual quiches) Plant-Based, no-oil, gluten-free
Preheat oven to 450 degrees F, 230 degrees C
Veggies (or substitute 3-4 cups of any cooked mixed vegetables you happen to have)
2 golden, red, or Chioggia beets, peeled, minced
1 lb spinach or mixed baby leafy greens like kale, chard, collards
1 large red onion, medium dice
1 medium or 3 small purple or orange fleshed sweet potatoes
1 large crown of broccoli, divided into small florets
Dry vermouth or veggie broth to deglaze sauteed onions
1 tbsp. tapioca flour
1 tbsp. arrowroot (called araroot in South Asian grocery)
2 tbsp. nutritional yeast
1/2 tsp. pink, sulfurous black salt (called kala namak in South Asian grocery) - optional
1/2 tsp. kosher or sea salt
1/4 tsp. ground white pepper
1/2 tsp. granulated garlic
1/2 tsp. granulated onion
1/2 tsp. ground turmeric
1 tsp. apple cider vinegar
1/4 cup silken tofu
1 cup almond or other plant milk
2 cups chickpea flour (called besan in South Asian grocery)
1 tbsp. nutritional yeast
1/4 tsp. sea or kosher salt
pinch of ground white pepper
2 tsp. arrowroot
1 tbsp. freshly ground flaxseed
1 tbsp. aluminum-free baking powder
1/3 cup water
Dice beets, sweet potato and onion. (If you're making appetizers and your quiches are bitesized, dice veggies more finely.)
Over medium-high flame, dry saute onion stirring constantly until carmelized. Deglaze with minimal vermouth or veggie broth if needed. Wilt baby greens. Steam other veggies separately until soft but not mushy.
In blender or food processor, combine custard ingredients and blend until smooth. Heat in a saucepan, stirring constantly until it thickens and becomes more difficult to stir.
In a food processor, combine dough dry ingredients and blend. With the machine running, VERY gradually add two-thirds of the water and wait a good minute to see gathers the dough in a soft ball. Be patient. The flour takes time to rehydrate and it's easy to overshoot the mark.
Remove dough. Dust a board with chickpea flour and roll out. For a large pie a thicker crust (1/8") is nice as it tastes great and lends a pleasant slightly chewy bite. For mini quiches shoot for 1/16" thickness and for bites, thinner still.
Dust dough surfact and roll. Flip, dust and roll and keep flipping, dusting and rolling until your desired thickness. Line tins with parchment paper. Cut out dough to fit your tins.
You can combine all veggies for a medley OR distribute the carmelized onions to each separate bowl of veggies for more distinctive and diverse look to your quiches.
Stir in sufficient custard into veggie bowl(s) until very well coated. Spoon into dough cups, filling completely. Top each quiche with a dollop more of custard if you like.
Large pies will take longer to bake. We have no raw ingredients so the baking is relatively fast, just to heat up the veggy-custard and lightly toast the crusts. 3" quiches can take 15-20 minutes; mini bitesize quiches may require 10-15 minutes, depending on your oven. Check often. Wait for the crusts to color up but don't overcook beyond that point.
Let me know how you like 'em!
Eat hearty, eat healthy!