Quiche takes turn toward Southwest

Several months ago, a young woman attended a series of basic cooking classes that I taught and discovered a new passion — cooking.

She decided it was time to pursue a culinary degree and enrolled in the Hospitality Program at Johnson County Community College in Overland Park. As part of her educational program, she is required to do an internship and asked whether I would be willing to take her on as an intern. Of course, I was delighted and quickly put her to work.

Last Saturday, that culinary student, Marci Hawks, gave a free demonstration on how to make a quiche. Although we traditionally associate quiche with French cuisine, Marci deviated from the classic and gave her quiche a spicy Southwest flair by lacing it with sauteed onions and bell peppers and a hefty portion of pepper jack cheese.

Like a true pro, Marci had done her mise en place (everything in its place) and then deftly described the attributes of a good quiche, a hearty breakfast or brunch dish that can be easily made and beautifully presented.

Using a deep-dish, 9-inch quiche pan with a removable bottom, her impressive quiche stood tall and was beautifully garnished with sour cream, fresh tomatoes and a sprinkling of scallions.

Her recipe would be a great addition to your repertoire, and one you might like to use for a holiday brunch. Or, paired with a salad, it would make a delightful lunch.