Gluten Free Ham and Cheese Quiche with Spinach

Now that the weather is turning warmer (finally!) I've been thinking about lighter foods.  This quiche recipe, adapted from Cooking Light, was originally made for me by a friend when we were having a girls' night dinner (and when's the last time that's happened?).  It has become one of my favorite lunches and is a great meal to make when having people over for a light meal.  It is Cooking Light so the recipe is all very healthy and non-fat.  I don't know about you but I am not a big fan of low-fat cheese so I don't exactly follow all the guidelines, but it is crustless so that helps to cut out some of the fat and calories you may get by adding a pie crust.  I posted this once before but now I've also made it gluten free.  We have family with gluten intolerance so that works out well, but you totally use regular ham and flour in the same amounts and it turns out the exact same.

This is great served with a salad, soup, or, as we had it last night, with fruit salad.  It's a great meal for spring and summer because it's not heavy, and I'm sure if you wanted to make it meatless it would still turn out tasty.

Crustless Gluten Free Ham and Cheese Quiche with Spinach

Cooking spray
3/4 cup (4 ounces) gluten-free ham, such as Appleseed's
1/2 cup chopped onion
1/ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
3/4 cup (3 ounces) shredded Swiss cheese, divided
1 cup fresh baby spinach leaves
1 cup fat-free cottage cheese
1/2 cup evaporated fat-free evaporated milk
1/4 cup (1 ounce) shredded reduced-fat cheddar cheese
2 large eggs
2 large egg whites
1/2 cup gluten free all-purpose flour, such as Bob's Red Mill (about 2 1/4 ounces)
1 teaspoon baking powder

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

2. Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat.  Coat pan with cooking spray.  Add ham, onion, and pepper to pan.  Saute 4 minutes or until ham is lightly browned.

3. Sprinkle 1/4 cup shredded Swiss cheese in a 9-inch pie plate coated with cooking spray.  Top with ham mixture and then with the spinach.

4. Combine remaining 1/2 cup Swiss cheese, and next 5 ingredients (through egg whites) in a large bowl; stir with a whisk.

5. Lightly spoon flour into a dry measuring cup; level with a knife.  Combine flour and baking powder in a small bowl, stirring with a whisk.  Add flour mixture to egg mixture, stirring with a whisk until blended.  Pour egg mixture over spinach.  Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes or until a knife inserted in the center of quiche comes out clean.

Loving Lately.

First, thank you to all who left such nice messages on Friday's post.  They all mean so much.  Yesterday was a long, full day talking to lots of people, and I don't think I've ever fallen asleep so fast in my life.  Today will hopefully be a little quieter, with mostly just immediate family around, as we say goodbye one last time.


You know I love a good chunky scarf, and the color is amazing.

If someone wanted to send this along to me, I wouldn't mind.

Casey.  As a softie.  Can you just imagine?  I love these.

This gorgeous pendant.  That is a lot of work.

There is something about handmade soap that makes me want every one I see.


I hope you all have a great day!

The Great Outdoors

When we bought our house, the people who sold it to us were moving to a 55+ senior community, and therefore didn't need any of the yard equipment they had accumulated over the years.  They offered some of it to us to buy- like the snow blower and the lawn mower (which we did) but they also left us a whole bunch of shovels and other small yard tools, and they also left their set of deck furniture.  This was a fantastic bonus for us, given the fact that we were about to renovate the whole house and would not be buying any patio furniture.  It was a cute set and it was painted to match the house, but since it was old, it was starting to fall apart, and so we decided that now that the inside of the house was done, it would be a good time to order something new for the outside.

 old set

And so yesterday, three large boxes appeared on the driveway, and after bringing all the parts to the backyard for Ikea-style assembly (though the furniture is Hampton Bay from Home Depot), a few hours later we were done.

We threw out two old wood benches that were on the lower part of the deck in order to make room for a more comfortable and inviting sofa set.  We bought a swivel umbrella and hubs rigged it up in the corner of the upper part of the deck, so now we can eat and be able to look at each other instead of an umbrella pole.  And since it was 65 degrees yesterday, we had our first meal outside.  Now we just need to fill up the grill tank and we'll be all set.

Book Decor.

It started with the new bookshelves in our living room.  We didn't have nearly enough books to fill them, so I started gathering good finds at the dump.  (For those of you who are new- we take our garbage to the local dump, and they have a swap shack there where you can leave items in good condition and pick up new finds, kind of like a free tag sale.  I'm not dumpster diving.)  I started picking up things we might read, but I also picked up popular titles and books with neat looking spines.  We planned to remove all the dust jackets, so a neat spine was important.

So we filled the bookcases, but it's hard to stop once you know you can get cool free books anytime you want.  So I've started using them as decor in different rooms.  A pile on the living room side table, a pile on the dining room banquet, one on either end of the mantel, a pile in the mudroom, one on the bedroom dresser.  And I love how they look, especially with other little finds surrounding them, and now they've become a theme in the house.  If I could get away with it, I'd probably make a pile that comes halfway up the wall.

How do you store your books?  Do you have any decor themes in your house?

Currently Loving.

Things I'm loving this week:

I want this bracelet.  A lot.  It's my birthstone, and it's pretty.

This is a mattress.  Seriously.  It looks incredibly comfortable.

I love this entire shop.

Sea salt caramel soap.  Need I say more?

Forever flowers!

I think Casey needs a new collar, yes?

Just gorgeous.

What have you been loving lately?



Did you see what happened?  Yesterday was Monday and there was NO POST.  I missed Monday, the most important day of the blogging week!  (Did you know I haven't missed a weekday post since the start of the new year?  I'm a little disappointed to have broken the streak.)

Anyway, no post yesterday.  My husband's boss came for dinner, and while all went well and the food was really good, most of yesterday was spent running to preschool, grocery shopping, putting everything away, and then doing the last-minute cleaning and clutter-hiding and food prep.  So, because I didn't write a post Sunday night like I usually do, I left myself open for the big no-blog-post-today letdown.  At least it was a letdown for me.

So of course that left me wondering: is consistency of a blog as far as posting is concerned a big deal to you?  Do you prefer it when a blog posts every day versus posting a few times a week versus posting a few times a month?

Personally, it doesn't bother me as long as the content is something I want to continue to read.  If I'm interested in the blog, then I'm excited when they post something new regardless of the gap in between posts, and when I'm not, then I start to wonder why I'm still following them.  I do like to know that a blogger is still interested in their blog- I want to see some kind of upkeep going on.  On the other hand, a blog that has many multiple posts a day kind of drives me crazy because I feel like it's really hard to keep up with reading a blog that does that. 

And I suppose that is the argument for blogging quality versus quantity.  I actually think both are good: you can write brilliant posts but if you do so too sporadically, you may lose readers who are looking for more consistency, or conversely you can post garbage several times a day and your readers know you're just posting filler.  Neither extreme is really helpful to keeping your readers.

What do you think?  How do you like your blogs?

Links I Love.


Currently loving:

30 Random Acts of Kindness

The reviews on this product are hilarious.

I'm giving away a custom hoop over here.  There's some other cool stuff up for grabs too.

Betsy's post is great, and the comments are awesome food for thought.

An ode to David Beckham's tailor.

Cats vs. Blinds.

Awesomeness Around the World.

Simplify Your Life.

What have you been loving lately?

I Like My Job.


This past week, Paige tweeted a link to this post, an article dealing with women in the workplace and how, despite the fact that women can now "have it all", many are choosing not to.  She goes on to say that despite all kinds of stereotype changes it's been that way for over a decade, and how can we change it so women understand they don't have to give up their career when they have kids?  That they really can have it all?

And I wonder what her issue is.

There are many women who want to be wives and mothers.  When they have kids, they want to stay home and take care of them.  That is what is known as the maternal instinct.  We have kids so that we can raise them, so we can teach them lessons and make sure they turn out right.  That's the job.  And it's a hard job and it doesn't pay well at all, at least in the ways that a "regular" career would.

But what's so wrong about wanting that job?

What is so wrong about wanting to make that career change?  I bet Ms. Belkin wouldn't have much to say if a lawyer suddenly wanted to be a professor, or an executive decided to become a journalist, for example.  Those are clearly acceptable career choices for the modern woman, unlike "giving up" a job for the career of stay-at-home mom.

But I have to tell you: I was happy to give up my often non-fulfilling job as a teacher.  It was easy to decide to take care of my child instead of 20 other people's kids.  I have always known that, if possible, I wanted to stay home with my kids at least until they are full-time in school.  That's what my mom did, and when I entered second grade, she went back to work (and not to the career she originally started out in, either).  She didn't see staying home as an interruption to working, it was just a change in career.  Being a mom is enormously rewarding- I reap the benefits of it every day.  

I want to be the one that sets up the daily routine.  I want to know what their eating, what they're playing with, and how much television they're watching.  It's my job to make sure they learn manners and follow rules.  Our rules, and not those of another caregiver.  I want to be able to pick Gus up at school if he's not feeling well or take Greta to the doctor for her well-visits and not have to work around a crazy schedule  Maybe that's a little too 1950's for Ms. Belkin, but I have to say, I think kids were much better behaved in the 50's than they are now, so maybe it's not such a bad thing.

Not everyone wants a job that they leave the house for every day.  Not everyone wants a stressful, high-powered, fast-track career.  I think we've gone a little too far in the other direction, making women feel like they need to have the big job and the family in order to be successful.  But I don't think that's really true and it puts too much pressure on women.

I'm not saying my job is for everyone; not everyone wants to be a parent, and that is okay. When I was teaching, I was across the hall from a lovely woman who loved kids but had too much else going on to want to have them herself.  And I commend her decision.  She knew she have the time and energy to put into raising children, so she didn't have them, and she has a wonderfully fulfilling life. It's all about choices.

I'm also not aiming this at those who need to work and cannot stay home with their children, or those who love their job and want to continue to work.  I know there are mothers who long to stay at home and just can't afford to do that, or those who need to get out of the house and be productive, and I understand both of those as well.  In those cases, their working is being a good parent and is the means for providing their kids with the things they need.  It's not an attack on the working mother.

It's just standing up for the stay-at-home careerist.