Its really easy and a hearty way to start the morning. Quiche. That egg pie with meat and stuff surrounding by oh so delightful melty smoked cheese. Sort of an omelet in pie form.
I opted for the smoked cheese simply because I wanted to play up the smokey flavor of the ham one more way. If you can't find smoked Gruyere, any old unsmoked Gruyere or Swill cheese will work fine.
The key to this Quiche bottom pastry being flaky is to keep it dry. Spinach, even the wilted stuff releases a lot of water. Adding a thin layer of dried minced onion soaks up the excess moisture so you still get a baked flaky crust on the bottom.
Spinach Ham and Smoked Gruyere Quiche
Pie Dough for a 9" pie plate
1 c half and half
pinch of salt
1 1/2 c diced ham
1 C wilted spinach - cooled
2 T dried minced onion
1/8 t nutmeg
1 1/2 c smoked Gruyere cheese
2 T grated Parmesan cheese.
Preheat oven to 400F
Add pie dough to pie plate. Flute edges. Place pie plate on a rimmed baking sheet to catch any boil over.
Sprinkle dried minced onion evenly over the bottom of the prepared pie plate. Add even layer of wilted cooled spinach. Sprinkle with nutmeg.
Add 1/2 of the Gruyere cheese and spread in even layer over the spinach. Add ham in even layer over the cheese. Top with remaining Gruyere cheese.
Whisk together eggs, half and half and salt. Pour over the meat/spinach/cheese layers. Dust with the Parmesan cheese.
Bake 30-35 minutes until set and tester comes out clean. Cool 5 minutes before cutting. Serve warm. Chase with a nice mimosa, or if a tee-totaler plain OJ.