Asparagus and Ramp Quiche: Spring is Here!Elizabeth Stark
Asparagus and ramps are two of the first spring veggies to show up in New York farmers’ markets, so seeing them out marks a joyous end to the days of root vegetables and kale and is a harbinger of summer eating to come. They also happen to be pretty good in their own right, not just as symbols of the season. Ramps, for the uninitiated, are members of the onion family similar to scallions with broader leaves with a wonderful pungent taste.
The pungency of the ramps pairs nicely with the sweetness of asparagus in this quiche. In addition to the wonderful spring flavors of the ramps and asparagus, this quiche has a marvelous buttery crust, which should help solve one of the biggest problems with quiche. For some reason quiche was a really divisive dish in the 80s and someone started the rumor that real men don’t eat it. But I can assure you they do. If you run into someone who still has a prejudice against quiche, just tell them it’s an “egg pie.”
Asparagus and Ramp Quiche
makes 1 quiche
for the crust
1 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
pinch of sugar
8 tablespoons butter, cut into cubes
1 tablespoon yogurt
up to 3 tablespoons ice water
In the bowl of your food processor, combine the flour, salt, and sugar. Cut in the butter by pulsing several times. Mix the yogurt and water, and then drizzle in to the dough and pulse several times.
Turn the dough onto a work surface and gather into a ball. Flatten into a 4″ disc and wrap tightly with plastic. Refrigerate for 30 minutes to an hour.
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Liberally butter a 9″ tart or quiche pan and set aside.
On a lightly floured surface, roll the dough into an 11″ circle. Fold the dough into quarters and unfold inside the tart pan. Fold any overhanging dough into the sides to reinforce. Poke all over with a fork, place a sheet of foil inside, place onto a rimmed baking sheet, and bake for 8 minutes. Remove the foil and bake for 2 minutes more. Remove from oven while you prepare the filling.
for the filling
10 asparagus spears, rinsed with woody ends broken off
6 ramps, rinsed and chopped
3 tablespoons butter
1 cup milk
1/2 cup grated Pecorino Romano
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon white pepper
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Bring a medium pot of salted water to a boil. Blanch the asparagus for 2 minutes, and then immerse in ice water to stop cooking. Chop the spears into thirds and set aside.
In a medium skillet heat the butter over medium-high heat. Add the ramps and saute for 8 minutes, until they are tender and quite fragrant. Add the asparagus, salt, and pepper, and saute for 2 more minutes.
Meanwhile, beat the eggs and milk in a medium bowl. Add the sauteed vegetables, and stir. Add 3 tablespoons of Pecorino and stir. Place the quiche shell onto a rimmed baking sheet, gently pour the egg mixture into the shell, and sprinkle the top with the remaining cheese. Bake for 25 minutes, or just until the quiche has set up.