As much as I love browsing through the spring issues of my favourite food magazines, drooling over the freshly picked asparagus, bright green peas and jewel-tone radishes, the fact is that the growing season here in Canada is short.
It starts significantly later, and ends earlier, than warmer climes, meaning that the beautiful green snow peas I’m reading about in March won’t make an appearance in Ontario gardens until June. Same goes for my backyard tomatoes. By the time they’re ripe, the food media is already on to pumpkin and butternut squash.
Today we had our very first hint of real spring. The sun was shining, the snow was melting and the temperature was finally above zero. To top things off, I even saw a robin! Locally grown spring produce may still be a ways off, but these first signs of warmer weather helped change my mental tune from heavier winter fare to lighter springtime dishes. (Note: I wrote this a few days ago and the snow has since returned. Thank you, Mother Nature…not!)
I made these individual crustless asparagus and goat cheese quiches with spring, and Easter, in mind. Ontario asparagus isn’t in season until May, but I found a nice bunch of thin green stalks, presumably shipped from elsewhere, at the grocery store. I’ll be sure to make this recipe again when our home grown crops are ripe for the picking!
- 10 thin asparagus spears, cut into 1-inch pieces
- 4 eggs
- 1 cup milk
- 1/2 cup Greek yogurt
- 1/4 cup finely chopped fresh parsley
- 1/4 tsp mustard powder
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp black pepper
- 1/2 small onion, finely chopped
- 5 oz goat cheese, crumbled
- Oil spray
- Pre-heat oven to 375°F. Pre-heat a pan over medium heat. Add the asparagus and a 1/4 cup of water and cover; cook until tender but still firm and bright green, about 4 minutes. Drain and cool.
- In a medium bowl, beat the eggs and whisk in the milk, Greek yogurt, parsley, mustard powder, salt and pepper.
- Spray the inside of 4 individual baking dishes or ramekins with the oil spray. Spread the onion, asparagus and goat cheese evenly in the bottom of each dish and pour the egg mixture overtop.
- Transfer to the oven and bake for ~30 minutes or until the middle has set and a toothpick inserted into the centre of each comes out clean.
- This recipe can also be made in one round baking dish or pie plate instead of 4 individual portions. Adjust the baking time accordingly.