Here I come to save the day! (Thanks, Mighty Mouse.) Yes, friends, the express train known as the zucchini glut has pulled up at farm stands everywhere, and you can never have too many recipes to help you enjoy the ride. This zucchini, goat cheese and basil frittata is just the kind of dish that saves the day in our house, a quick and easy lunch or light supper recipe that isn't at all fussy. Make it in the morning and refrigerate for later in the day (or for the following day), or spend 15 minutes and cook right before you're ready to eat. Frittatas have only a few ingredients, so make sure you use the best cheeses, eggs and herbs you can find. Lucky for me, I had just enough of my friend Christine's goat cheese left after making an arugula, berries and goat cheese salad, and the two dishes came together in a perfect summer supper.
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Trust me on this: you must have a basic quiche recipe in your repertoire, and always, always, always a package of store-bought pie crust in the refrigerator. You'll be amazed at the magic you can work with eggs, cheese and a bit of dough, plus whatever else you find in the pantry, especially when guests drop in, as they tend to do in summer. Think of this as your all-purpose quiche formula: change the cheese, swap out the veggies, use different herbs and seasonings. You can't go wrong. I love meatless variations, but if you have some rotisserie chicken or smoked salmon or cooked sausage, toss them into the mix. For a light summer lunch or supper, all you need is a wedge of quiche and a green salad, along with a glass of cold white wine. Enjoy the leftovers, if there are any, for breakfast.
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Did you know that you can buy matzoh in the supermarket all year round, not just at Passover, and not just in the giant-size packages they sell during the holiday season? (If you don't know what matzoh looks like, here's a photo; it's a type of flatbread or large cracker.) In our house, we tend to buy the same plain kosher-for-Passover matzoh year after year, and to make the same matzoh brei recipe (my dad's classic) year after year. And we only make it during the holidays; I don't know why. I'm tired of the same old same old, and as proof, I offer this maple cinnamon matzoh brei (pronounced MAT-zah BRY), which is very much like a frittata or a really substantial quiche. Instead of the somewhat bland classic version that relies on salt for flavor, this sweet matzoh brei kicks off your day with cinnamon, maple syrup, and a bit of vanilla. I tested it on a group of friends a few weeks ago. There were no leftovers.
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Some people possess the elegance gene. Clothes, hair, pastry -- effortlessly elegant. I didn't get that gene, not even a tiny portion of that gene, and especially not the pastry portion of that gene. So, whenever I manage to make something ever so slightly elegant, like these puff pastry tartlets, it rates a celebration. Last week, I wanted to create a pretty vegetarian appetizer, and my pantry came to the rescue with store-bought puff pastry and the last of last summer's slow-roasted tomatoes, excavated from the freezer. A mandoline made the paper-thin zucchini toppers, but a good, sharp knife and a steady hand can do the same.
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