Offbeat Home's Cooking Challenge, Day 2's recipes: Quiche, quesadillas, and a spicy curry

By on Apr 29th

Today is Day 2 of Offbeat Home's Cooking Challenge, wherein we see if Offbeat Bride's Managing Editor, a complete non-cook who lives off of frozen pizza and cereal, can go an entire week of preparing her own meals.

Each day, Cat Rocketship (who SWEARS you can afford better food!) will be sharing the recipes that Megan will be preparing — feel free to play along at home! If Megan, a pizza-loving non-cooking cereal-for-dinner web dork can feed herself healthy, home-cooked meals for a week — YOU CAN TOO.


For Monday, I'm remembering to assign you a snack! There aren't any major notes for today, so I'll just nudge you to remember to prep your ingredients at the beginning of each meal. And a lesson it took me a really long time to learn: if something tastes bland, try it with more salt before you give up. It's a miracle mineral — there's a reason people love it so much.

Breakfast: Basic quiche


This is a very simple egg dish, not just limited to breakfast. You can also make this for lunch or dinner (or just eat the leftovers then!)

INGREDIENTS

  • Piecrust (But piecrusts are BITCHES and it's okay to skip this ingredient for now, too)
  • Olive oil!
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves (pieces) of garlic
  • Salt
  • 4 eggs
  • 3/4 cup half-and-half or cream
  • 8 ounces Gruyere cheese (or parm!), grated
  • 4 cups frozen broc

1.Heat oven to 375 degrees. If you have a crust, put it in a glass pan. If you don't, rub that pan down with a little bit of olive oil.
2. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium-low heat. Add the onions and 1/2 teaspoon of salt. Stir occasionally, until soft, about five minutes.
2. Add mixed greens, cook up for about five minutes.
3. In a bowl, whisk together eggs, half-and-half/cream, a pinch of salt. Stir in onions, greens, and cheese.
4. Pour mixture into pan. Bake about 40 minutes, or until a knife inserted into the center comes out clean.
5. Let sit five minutes. Cut and SERVE UP THAT SHIT, WOMAN! Hive five.

Here are some embellishment ideas:

  • Hot sauce!
  • Add more cheese on top — any kind
  • Syrup — but WHY people like syrup on eggs, I don't know

Notes for a newbie quiche cooker
It can be tough to tell when quiche is done. I'm not great at them yet. But if it's in the oven for 30-40 minutes, it is going to be edible and probably even tasty, so don't sweat it too much.

Leftover quiche is a great lunch. Or dinner, or snack — and it's good warm or cold. Be prompt about storing this dish away so it tastes fresh later.


Lunch: Grilled portobello mushroom quesadilla


MMM MORE CHEESE. Eat a carrot or something too, will ya?

This is a recipe for a large lunch for one.

  • 4 corn tortillas
  • Olive oil
  • Portobello mushroom, sliced
  • 1 cup grated (or thinly sliced) cheddar
  • Optional addition: this would be a good place for more of that apple from yesterday

Embellishment ideas:

  • Hot sauce!
  • Ketchup!
  • Bell pepper slices!
  1. Get out your George Foreman grill. I have no idea how to use those things, so this first bit's on you. You could also use a pan — I'd use a cast iron pan dry, heated to medium heat. So do whatever hoodle you do to prep a Foreman.
  2. Prepare the mushroom. If it has a stalk, cut off the dirty bit. Wash the whole thing. Snap off the stalk. Slice the stalk into coins about 1/3 of an inch thick. Lay the mashroom cap gills-down on the cutting board and Slice it too. Put it all in a small bowl.
  3. Ladle a liiittle bit of olive oil on the mushroom. Stir the bowl a bit to coat everything.
  4. Drop mushrooms into pan, sprinkle with some salt, and grill on medium-medium high heat for 5-6 minutes, stirring occasionally — err on the cooler side with the Foreman, I think. Remove mushrooms.
  5. Seriously, cut yourself up some carrot strips.
  6. Place corn tortilla in pan. Layer on cheese, then mushrooms, then another tortilla. Smush with a spatula — or a Foreman lid. Let cook 1-3 minutes each side in a pan, and until things look melty on the Foreman.
  7. Remove! Slice your 'dilla in half. Give yourself a gold star for lunch time.


Snack!


I think I forgot to give you a snack on Sunday. I'm sure you found something to nosh on :)

We've been a little heavy on cheese today. How about some strawberries? Wash them off, slice off the heads, and serve in a bowl. If you want to experiment, add a dish of sugar to dip them in. I also like to soak cherries in a carbonated drink — it makes them taste sparkly. Seltzer, pop, whatever.


Dinner: Chickpea spinach curry with cucumber-yogurt sauce and rice, with a dark chocolate bar for sweets


This is probably a two-serving recipe. Double or triple as necessary for leftover planning or guest-feeding.

  • olive oil
  • 1/2 large onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, smashed
  • 1/2 tablespoon chopped ginger: peel or roughly chop the skin from the edges of the plant. Remove any dry ends. If you have trouble chopping the ginger, try going with the grain — vertically — down the root. Sometimes it is woody and difficult to work wit.
  • 1 tablespoon curry powder
  • 1 15.5 ounce can of chickpeas/garbanzos
  • several handfuls spinach, chopped (I had Megan buy fresh greens, but spinach is one item you can easily keep on hand in your freezer)
  • salt!
  • 1/2 cup yogurt
  • 1/3 cup chopped cilantro
  • 1/2 cucumber, skinned and diced
  • rice
  1. Prep the rice. If you have a rice cooker, dish up 3/4 a cup of dry rice per person. Rinse rice several times. Load the cooker with water — about as much water as rice. Pinch in a healthy amount of salt (1 teaspoon?). Place lid on top and hit "cook".
  2. If you do not have a rice cooker follow these directions for cooking rice on a stove.
  3. Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat for at least 60 seconds. Add onion, garlic, and ginger and cook for six minutes, stirring often.
  4. Add curry and cook for additional minute.
  5. Add chickpeas, spinach, one cup water, 1/2 teaspoon salt to the saucepan. Bring to a simmer (a low-level of bubbling activity) and cook for 12 minutes, stirring occasionally. About four minutes in, use your spatula or a fork to mashed up the peas a little. It can be precarious, so don't sweat it too much.
  6. Meanwhile, mix yogurt, cucumber, cilantro, and a pinch of salt in a small bowl with a spoon.
  • When time is up and rice is done, fluff rice and dish onto a plate. Ladle chickpea sauce over the top generously — think of them as two meal items you can eat together.

I'm sorry, I'm kind of weak on desserts. But I never turn down a dark chocolate bar — especially as a palate cleanser after a savory, spicy meal like this.

While Megan will do full cooking reports the following day, you can see photos and follow her Offbeat Home cooking challenge adventures real-time, too: @meganfinley #obhfood

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About Cat Rocketship

I was the Managing Editor of Offbeat Home for a year and a half. I have a rich Internet life and also a pretty good real life. Hobbies include D&D, Twitter, and working on making our household more self-reliant. I also draw things.