Sunday, September 11, 2011

Summer Vegetable Custard

I had planned to cook all last weekend, but shifts came open at my second job, and I had to opt for the money. This left eggplants, banana and bell peppers, and three kinds of squash marooned in my refrigerator. I had to do something with them Tuesday before they underwent the Big Shrivel. I planned to cook them up separately. I would freeze them for later.

I put two 7 inch regular eggplants in a baking dish and roasted them at 375 for an hour. This gave me 1 1/2 cups of pulp. I ground up 3 five inch zucchini and 2 small yellow squash in my food processor. Then in went 3 sweet banana peppers and 1 large red pepper, all ground to just this side of a puree. I thought I would saute them. And then I realized that I had the makings of a Ratatouille custard. I sauteed a medium yellow onion in olive oil, and sweated it with sea salt. When it was golden it joined the other vegetables in a big mixing bowl. And then I added 1 cup of diced fire roasted canned tomatoes. I put in some more sea salt to taste and a dash or two of Italian seasoning. And 4 minced cloves of garlic. I grated up a cup of Romano cheese and added it. This was the last chance to taste and adjust before I beat in 6 eggs. I put the custard into a 9 inch ungreased Pyrex baking dish. I baked it at 375 for a little over an hour, but keep your eye on this. As soon as the center is set and a test fork comes out clean, this custard is done.

I took this dish in to work to repay a couple I worked with who had taken me out to dinner. They are adventurous eaters, and I knew they would love it. They did. But a young, new nurse was not so sure. She hated eggplant, she said. But she decided to try the custard.

"This is great" was her verdict, "This is off the chain. I can''t even taste the eggplant".

Well of course she could. She had no experience in tasting eggplant used well.

This was a fine dish. A quiche without a crust A custard, if you prefer. We ate it up to the last molecule.


Out on the prairie said...

I fixed some eggplant parmigiana over the weekend, and enjoy this unique vegetable.A friend roasts them over coals and makes a dip that is real good with the pulp.

troutbirder said...

Looks yummy. I really enjoyed you comments about looking up at the stars and grandchildren looking under rocks for salamanders. That reminded me of a book I finished recently titled "Last Child In the Woods by Louv. It's so sad that in todays world about children being consumed by electonic technology and oversuprevised by parent who fear (with some reason) to let them out of there sight for a minute....