I was a little hesitant about foraging for edibles by my lonesome because… well, how can you be truly certain you are not going to poison yourself of your family. Unless, however you were fortunate enough to spend hours with someone well acquainted with the plant species in your area… I have had no such mentor, so I must winging it. I decided to make something with what I thought was sorrel, but it turned out to be patience dock (a.k.a garden patience, herb patience or Monk’s rhubarb) and it is in the same family as sorrel, rumex, which includes dock and sorrel varieties. I went walking around my neighborhood looking for some to harvest for dinner and I was amazed how prolific it was. I found numerous spots to find harvest some young leaves, even in my own yard.
So, back when I thought patience dock was sorrel, I Googled some recipes for inspiration. I knew it could be used in similar ways to spinach, but I was looking for something different. I came across a sorrel and goat cheese quiche recipe from Two Small Farms, which sounded perfect because with quiche, once it is in the oven, you can spend the evening with your family while it bakes and rests.
In tasting the raw leaves, I found them quite bitter and a bit too tough for a mixed salad, even the younger ones. Due to the bitter flavor, I was skeptical of the final product, but I was surprised that the bitterness dissipated during the cooking process, but the flavor of the goat cheese somewhat surpressed the greens. The overall opinion of my family was 75% positive. Boryana was not a fan, although she loves my pie crust. Considering she is six, dinner is hit or miss with her anyway. Maya on the other hand gobbled it up… literally.
Dock and Goat Cheese Quiche
2 – 3 cups of patience dock, coarsely chopped
4 – 5 scallions, white and green, chopped
4 oz (100g) goat cheese, preferable something similar to Chevre
3 – 4 eggs, three if using a regular 9″ pie plate, four if using a deep-dish
1.5 – 2 cups (350 – 450ml) milk, 350 if using a regular 9″ pie plate, 450 if using a deep-dish
Freshly ground black pepper
pinch of nutmeg, freshly ground (optional)
1/4 cup parmesan cheese, freshly grated
1 pie crust, use your favorite recipe, here is mine or pre-made, if you must 😦
Pre-heat oven to 400F (205C), I would recommend pre-baking your pie crust if you want a crisper bottom, but it is not necessary.
Thinly slice the goat cheese and spread on the bottom of the pie crust, cover cheese with chopped dock and scallions.
Whisk together eggs, milk and nutmeg, season with salt and pepper. Pour mixture over greens. Evenly sprinkle parmesan cheese over the top.
Bake on the middle rack and bake till egg mixture is puffed and cheese is golden brown. Insert a tooth pick or cake tester if it comes out clean you are good. For a 9″ pie plate, 35 – 40 minutes, for deep dish 40 – 45. Use your judgement. I use Pyrex pie plates, which I find preferable to metal for even distribution of heat. Let rest 10 – 15 minutes for the quiche to set.
Recipe adapted from Luna Circle Farm