Several days ago I came across a gorgeous recipe series titled For the Love of Pie, in particular a beautiful entry by Mimi Thorisson. Potatoes, bacon, onions and herbs… it’s all very French countryside, rustic and wholesome. I immediately began plotting a Paleo recreation to be produced in, well, my urban apartment in Dallas. Not quite the same effect as the original post, but I thought I had a stylish presentation concept for the pie itself that would outweigh my lack of scarred wooden tables, cottage stonework and adorable toddlers to populate my pictures. By slicing the (sweet, in my version) potatoes thin and arranging them in a spiral layer, the geometrical effect was intended to approximate these apricot, pistachio and lemon shortbread tartlets on a full scale.
Let me tell you, when the pie came out of the oven it looked great. The problem is, you can’t bake layers of raw sweet potatoes enough for the bottom layers to soften without the top layers burning! Isn’t real food frustrating? The top of the pie was softened while the rest of it was crunchy. Particularly heartbreaking was the fact that bacon + sweet potatoes is a flavor combination of genius. I stood in the kitchen and devoured warm, clumsy chunks of that stupid crunchy pie because it’s deliciousness was undeniable… and that’s when I decided to rework the presentation, abandon my precious geometry and serve up a humbler-looking quiche version using the pre-roasted sweet potato method to ensure zero chance of crunch.
This sweet potato quiche combines a trio of favorite ingredients in the Paleo community (eggs, bacon, and sweet potatoes) and ended up being a bit of a riff on sweet potato breakfast hash. You get the heightened flavor and sweetness gained by oven-roasting the sweet potato cubes before tumbling into a pie plate, crumbling bacon over the top and whisking eggs into the gaps. If it sounds simple, that’s because it is (also, the different components of the quiche can be made concurrently and ahead of time). I love a dish that can be thrown together in under five minutes from pre-cooked ingredients before I stagger back to bed on a weekend morning… only to emerge golden and glowing from the oven 40 minutes later.
- 3 sweet potatoes (~3 lbs)
- 2 tablespoons coconut oil
- 3 slices of bacon
- 1 bunch green onions
- 10 eggs
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
- Preheat the oven to 400°F. Wash, peel and cut the sweet potatoes into 1” cubes.
- Toss sweet potatoes with 2 tablespoons of coconut oil and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Arrange in a single layer on a cookie sheet and roast in the preheated oven until soft, approximately 20 minutes. Set aside, allow to cool.
- Cook the bacon slices over medium heat in a skillet until very crunchy and most of the fat has rendered. Set aside on a paper towel-lined plate to cool and drain. Once cool, dice.
- Wash green onions and cut lengthwise into thin, long strips. Pour off all but 1 teaspoon of bacon fat from the skillet, and cook green onions until soft over medium heat. Set aside on a paper towel-lined plate.
- Lower oven heat to 350°F. Lightly grease a pie plate or pan. Place half of the cooled sweet potato cubes in the bottom, sprinkle half the diced bacon on top and arrange half of the onions.
- Repeat with the second half of the sweet potatoes, bacon and onions, then whip the eggs with the nutmeg and remaining 1/4 teaspoon of salt.
- Pour the eggs over the rest of the ingredients in the pie plate, and bake until golden (approximately 40 minutes).
- The bacon can be crisped and the green onions softened while the sweet potatoes cook, shortening total time from start to finish considerably.