Monday Market Meals - Sweet Corn and Tomato Quiche

Monday, July 11, 2016


Barefoot Farms Farmer's Market

Today's guest blogger for Monday Market Meals is Kim Byer from South Carolina, host of the blog The Paper ApronKim splits her time between South Carolina’s inland capitol city—Columbia-- and the sea islands in the Lowcountry near Beaufort, South Carolina. Her food articles can be found in Charleston Living, Columbia Living and Wilmington, North Carolina magazines. When not hanging out with her husband, her two Golden Retrievers or tending to her flock of chickens, she’s likely on Instagram @paperapron.  Thanks, Kim, for the post!
A few years ago we built a cottage on stilts in a fishing village on a sea island off the coast of South Carolina. My father designed the house, we had it built, and now my family is slowly finishing the interior. Slowwwwwwly. Because by a few years, I mean four and by four I mean realistically ten. Here in the Lowcountry, not only do we talk more slowly, but there is no need to rush—it’s simply too hot and humid to hurry. And if the pace of life on these Carolina sea islands seems even slower than the rest of the South, then it shouldn’t come as a surprise to know that the slow food trend has been trendy here for centuries. Not that there aren’t take-out pizza nights and trips to the drive-thru and the grocery store, but for the most part, when we’re on the island and we’re not DIY-ing or crabbing or readying the Whaler for a day of shrimping, we’re headed into town to find the roadside food stand with the reddest strawberries or the market with the watermelon that thumps jussssst so.
The drive to town takes me within a stone’s skip to the turn where Pat Conroy was recently laid to rest in an unremarkable and secluded Gullah cemetery off of Highway 21. When Pat chose where he wanted to be buried, he chose the center of absolute nowhere and at once, the center of the universe. I pass a massive live oak, called the Lincoln Oak. Legend has it that a tall man in a stovepipe hat once stood atop a box and read a lengthy declaration that all men held as slaves should henceforth and forever be free. I pass the road to Penn Center, where a young civil rights leader, Dr. Martin Luther King, penned the beginnings of a speech that would echo throughout history as his splendid, majestic dream.
I mention these things because they’re important. I may be driving through the land of tomato packing plants and junked school buses heaving beneath the weight of a thousand watermelons, but the blood and bones and sweat of our ancestors enrich the soil that grows the seeds that spit out the plants that catch the unbearably bright Lowcountry sun to feed our summer dinner whims. Eating local food means understanding and honoring its origins.


Eating local food means understanding and honoring its origins.

I stop at Barefoot Farms and buy the reddest seedless watermelon I’ve ever seen and a handful of spicy peppers and heirloom tomatoes. In Port Royal, the next town over, the Saturday market is a lively respite in the breezy shade of a ring of oaks. Smells of wood-fired pizza and teriyaki dumplings mix with freshly baked bread and herb bouquets. Purple okra pods and fuchsia plums sit alongside gold and green zucchini and everywhere I look, local tomatoes are front and center on the farm tables.
Market mornings all over our country are redefining the way we feed our families. By honoring the local farmer’s food, the cheese monger’s cheese and the baker’s homemade goodies, we are honoring our community and feeding more than our families; we are feeding our souls.


In Port Royal the Saturday market is a lively respite in the breezy shade of a ring of oaks.

I head to my car with a bouquet of flowers and living basil, a piquant hunk of salty brie, a loaf of lemon curd cheesecake, some peaches and a few ears of corn. Recipes are swirling in my head as I start the engine and push my face into the air conditioner vent. I’ll use my hens’ eggs and a chunk of Gruyere along with my tomatoes, corn, peppers and basil to make a crustless quiche. I turn on the radio and listen to NPR. I think I’ll go a little slower as I pass by the Lincoln Oak this time.
-Kim Byer
 

Sweet Corn and Tomato Quiche 
Sweet Corn & Tomato Quiche
Serves six
Butter or oil for pie plate
1 1/4 cup grated Gruyere cheese
1/2 sweet onion, chopped
2 ripe tomatoes, thinly sliced
2 ears fresh sweet corn, off the cob
3 to 6 jalapenos or banana peppers, seeded and minced (optional)
2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil + extra for topping
5 eggs
1 small can (5 oz.) evaporated milk
1/8 t freshly ground pepper
1/4 t salt
Sour cream or goat cheese for topping
Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9-inch pie plate with butter, cooking spray or oil. Layer the bottom and sides of the pan with the Gruyere cheese. Continue with layers of onion, peppers, and the slices of one tomato. Add the corn and top with slices of the second tomato. In a medium-size bowl, crack five eggs and pour in one small can of evaporated milk. Add salt and pepper, whisk, and pour over vegetables. Add basil and another grind of  pepper. Bake for 30 minutes or until center is set. Top with small or torn basil leaves and a dollop of sour cream. 


3 comments:

  1. My sister, the writer, the foodie and the full-time creative.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks for your comment! Kim is an amazing writer.

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  2. Hi, Tray! I have only recently come to know Kim. She's a fantastic writer, and amazing cook I'm sure!

    ReplyDelete