West 95 and I decided that it's time for us to have some killer appetizers in pocket so we are ready when the party bug hits us. Our plan is to make yummy party appetizer recipes a couple times a month so we know how they taste, how long it takes to prepare them, if they freeze well, and how much they cost to make (that's an important one if you're having a big gathering). The first recipe we decided to try was quiche. They were supposed to be mini, but neither of us owns a mini muffin pan, so they were muffin sized. Even so, they were the perfect size and consistency to be eaten without a fork, or even without a plate, if you party with heathens like we do.
Mini Sausage Quiche
1 sheet frozen puff pastry, thawed and unfolded
1/2 pound bulk pork country sausage, hot or mild
1/4 cup finely minced sweet onion
1/4 cup finely diced sweet red bell pepper
1 clove finely minced garlic
4 ounces cream cheese (1/2 large block), at room temperature
1/8 tsp dry mustard powder
1/4 tsp ground sage
1/4 tsp ground thyme
1/4 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp salt
Dash of hot sauce, to taste
Dash Worcestershire sauce
Shredded Gruyere or Swiss cheese
Preheat oven to 400 degrees and grease a mini-muffin pan. (I used a regular sized muffin pan)
Lightly flour your workspace and using a rolling pin, roll out the puff pastry to a 12" x 14" sheet. It should be about 1/8" thick. Use a biscuit cutter to cut out 24 rounds. (I actually preferred the quiches that only had crust on the bottom as opposed to crust going up each side. Use a smaller circle cutter and experiment with the amount of crust to use)
Saute sausage, onion, red bell pepper and garlic until meat is no longer pink, breaking the sausage into small pieces as it cooks. Drain the fat and allow the mixture to cool to room temperature. Place 1 tbsp of the mixture in the bottom of each cup.
Blend the cream cheese, dry mustard, sage, thyme, onion powder, salt, hot sauce and Worcestershire sauce until smooth, then beat in eggs, one at a time, until just incorporated. Spoon the egg mixture into the cups and sprinkle with the shredded cheese.
Bake 10 minutes until golden, serve warm.
The recipe also says these can be frozen and reheated in a 350 degree oven for 15 to 20 minutes, and I know I told you this experiment was meant to test the freezing quotient of the dish, but soon after these honies came out of the oven, five ravenous people devoured them, rendering me incapable of that portion of the project. We'll have to take about.com's word for it.