The original recipe for this dish calls it a “quiche”. If you call it a quiche, then you’re setting yourself up for disappointment. Which is a shame, because it’s really a tasty dish. It would be kind of like calling a veggieburger a hamburger. If you’re expecting a hamburger, you’re going to be let down. But if you’re expecting something different that tastes really good in its own right and isn’t trying to be something else, then you’ll be pleasantly surprised. So to avoid disappointing all of you, I renamed this dish a “Vegetable Pie”.
I’ve been making this one for several years, ever since our third baby showed signs of food intolerances while he was nursing. At that time I ate dairy, egg and soy-free. Since I was avoiding dairy and eggs I was reading a lot of vegan cookbooks for recipes. I found this one in a gem called Veganomicon. I was vegetarian for a long time, so eating meat-free isn’t foreign to me.
Use whatever pie crust suits your diet. I like Elana Amsterdam’s Herb Crust. It uses almond flour so also boosts the protein content. You can also substitute other veggies for the asparagus, using whatever is in season. I could picture broccoli being pretty tasty around this time of year. Or spinach.
Note that the filling has to sit in the fridge for a while, so plan ahead!
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Source: adapted from Veganomicon by Isa Chandra Moskowitz and Terry Hope Romero
- 1 single pie crust (whatever fits your diet)
- 4 tbsp olive oil
- 1 pound asparagus tough ends removed
- 2 shallots skins removed, coarsely chopped
- 3 cloves garlic
- 1 cup cashews
- 1 1⁄2 cups cooked navy beans
- 1⁄4 cup loosely packed fresh herbs (basil, oregano, tarragon, parsley…)
- 2 tbsp fresh herbs finely chopped
- 2 tbsp potato starch
- 3⁄4 tsp salt
- 1⁄4 tsp ground nutmeg
- fresh ground pepper
- 1⁄3 cup bread crumbs made from whatever bread suits your diet
- 4 slices of a really big tomato
- Preheat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Slice the asparagus (or whatever veggie you are using) into bite-size pieces. Saute the veggies in the olive oil for about 7 minutes. Add the shallots and garlic to the pan and cook for another minute or two, until fragrant. Transfer the veggies to a bowl to cool.
- While the veggies are cooling, place the cashews, the 1/4 cup of herbs, nutmeg, salt and pepper into a food processor. Pulse into crumbs, so that no whole nuts are left.
- Once the veggies are cool, add them to the food processor. Pulse a few more times and scrape down the sides. Add the beans and puree until relatively smooth, although the nuts will still be grainy. Add the potato starch and pulse until combined. Transfer the mixture to a bowl, cover, and refrigerate for about 45 minutes.
- Preheat the oven to 350. Place your pie crust into an 8 inch glass pie plate. Cover with foil and bake for 15 minutes. Remove the crust.
- Spoon the filling into the crust and smooth out evenly. Sprinkle the top with half the bread crumbs and drizzle with 1 tbsp olive oil. Then place the tomato slices on top of the bread crumbs. Sprinkle on the remaining bread crumbs, some pepper, a little salt, and the chopped herbs. Drizzle with a bit more oil. Bake for 45 minutes and let cool for 20 minutes before serving.