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Great Tips for a Green Education

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Spring Queen's Quiche

(Family Features) - Encouraging children to be active in growing and preparing their own food -whether it's a fresh green salad, a simple casserole or a fresh fruit pie - can be a powerful and relevant life lesson, according to Organic Valley farmer Gloria Varney.

"Gardening teaches children right from the beginning that you get out of things what you put into them," Varney explains. "If they ignore the garden, their plants will suffer; but if they take proper care (watering, feeding and weeding), there can be tasty rewards!"

Varney notes that gardening gets children in touch with where food comes from and helps develop healthy eating habits. In addition, gardens teach kids about broad concepts such as growth, renewal and nourishment, while also helping them gain practical skills and knowledge.

Fresh spring greens such as spinach, as well as herbs like parsley, are easy to grow and harvest with children. Bring the kids into the kitchen with their backyard bounty and help them whip up a simple and delicious dish for mom on Mother's Day, like the quiche featured here. It combines fresh spinach, mushrooms, garlic, green onions and parsley with organic eggs, cheese and half and half for a light and elegant dish. A welcome addition to any brunch menu, this quiche would also be equally at home as the star of a simple dinner, with a green salad.

For this recipe and more delicious organic dishes, visit www.organicvalley.coop.

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Spring Queen's Quiche

This elegant and festive quiche features spring's finest baby greens and Organic Valley's famous Baby Swiss.

  • 2 tablespoons Organic Valley Salted Butter
  • 1 cup mushrooms, wiped clean and sliced thin
  • 3 cloves fresh garlic, peeled and minced
  • 2 cups spinach, washed and patted dry, then chopped
  • 6 Organic Valley Grade A, Extra-Large Brown Eggs
  • 1/4 cup Organic Valley Half and Half
  • 4 medium green onions, chopped fine
  • 2 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped
  • 4 ounces Organic Valley Baby Swiss Cheese, grated
  • 1 9-inch pie crust, whole-grain, store-bought or made from scratch
  • Sea salt and pepper, to taste

    1. Preheat oven to 375° F.
    2. In a large, heavy skillet, sauté mushrooms and garlic in butter over medium heat, until soft and golden. Add spinach and sauté, stirring, about 1 minute, until just wilted, but still tender and bright green. Remove skillet from heat. Season mixture with sea salt and pepper.
    3. In a small mixing bowl, whisk together eggs and half and half. Add green onions and fresh chopped parsley.
    4. Place prepared pie crust on a baking sheet. Sprinkle grated Baby Swiss over the bottom of shell and arrange spinach/mushroom mixture on top. Pour egg mixture over spinach and bake in the middle of the oven for 30 to 35 minutes, rotating the pan midway through bake time. Turn off oven and allow quiche to sit in the oven for another 10 to 15 minutes.
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Makes 10 servings

Notes, Tips & Suggestions
Variation: For a spring-inspired protein boost, add cubed Organic Valley Hardwood Smoked Uncured Boneless Ham. Garnish with fresh spring greens if desired.
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SOURCE: Organic Valley

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