Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Vegan Italian Quiche- Cinque e Cinque- with Non Vegan Option- Gluten Free, Soy Free

Cinque e cinque, horta salad (cooked wild greens with lemon
and olive oil, potatoes with foraged caperberries, capers, and olives)
I like quiches and frittatas- not completely sure what the difference is though... but either way, they're good, yummy, healthy, frugal, and very easy to make. I find that they also tend to be great even for kids and picky eaters- they seem to have a universal appeal. I just take whatever vegetables I have in the house, throw 'em in a pan with a few other ingredients, stick it in the oven and forget about it, and an hour later have a great meal ready to serve my family.
The thing is- quiches, typically made with eggs, milk, and flour, are a problem for me, because I'm off of dairy and gluten. For a while, I was making quiches with homemade non dairy milks and gluten free flours, but lately I've discovered that I do better without eggs, so I try to keep those to a minimum, making quiche a non option.
Or is it?

I discovered that chickpea flour, when mixed in the right amounts with water, and either fried or baked, has a very egg like texture, as well as an egg like taste. Italians made a lovely chickpea flour pie called cinque e cinque- which I have to say, is exactly like quiche! Only vegan!
Cinque e cinque is a good alternative to quiche for people who:

  • Are off eggs because of allergy/food sensitivity reasons
  • Are vegan
  • Are trying to limit animal products
  • Are trying to eat only organic animal products and can't afford them too often.
And honestly, lately eggs have gone up in price so much here- they cost over a quarter per egg now- that depending on how much it costs to buy chickpea flour, it may very well be cheaper to make this chickpea flour based quiche than an egg based quiche. Indian stores tend to sell chickpea flour cheapest- they call it besan.

I've included instructions though how to make an Italian inspired non vegan crustless quiche as well though, if you're a quiche purist, and/or you don't have/want to make a chickpea flour quiche. I didn't include cheese in the recipe because it's cheaper without and in my opinion, totally unnecessary  but you can add cheese if you feel a quiche must have.

Vegan Italian Quiche- Cinque e Cinque- with Non Vegan Option

1-2 medium/large onions
1 large eggplant
1 pepper- red or green
2 tomatoes
1 tablespoon oil
2 -3 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons garlic powder
1 teaspoon oregano
1 teaspoon basil

For Vegan Quiche:
2 1/2 cups chickpea flour
3 cups water
3 tablespoons oil

For Non Vegan Quiche:
3-4 eggs
1  1/2 cup milk (dairy free or regular milk)
1/4 cup flour (wheat flour, spelt, potato starch, rice flour, etc... any is fine)

1. Chop up onions.

2. Saute in oil until soft or browned, depending on your preference.

3. Chop eggplant, and add to onion. Cook until soft.

4. If using an oven safe skillet, add slices of pepper and slices of tomato. If not, transfer the onion, eggplant, peppers, and tomatoes into an oven safe dish.

5. Mix the chickpea flour, water, oil, salt, and spices, whisking very well to ensure no clumps. Or mix eggs, milk, and flour, salt, and spices.

6. Pour the mixture over the veggies.


7. Place the pan into an oven preheated to 400 degrees.

8. Cook for 45 minutes to an hour, or until the center is firm to the touch.


9. Let cool down a bit, cut wedges to serve, and dig in.

Any vegetables can be used. Feel free to add whatever you have in the house. Blanched wild greens taste terrific in quiche/cinque e cinque. You can use more mushrooms and onions in place of all the aforementioned vegetables. You can add potato to the quiche, or spinach, or broccoli or cauliflower, or change the proportions of the vegetables in the quiche. Just make sure to cook the vegetables first that don't cook easily, like the eggplant or potatoes.
In place of or in addition to the oregano and basil, feel free to add more Italian spices such as marjoram, thyme, or rosemary.

Have you ever coooked with chickpea flour before, or bought it? What is cheaper by you- eggs or chickpea flour? How much do eggs cost there?
What is your favorite type of quiche filling? How do you spice it?
Does this seem like a recipe you'd try, either with eggs or with chickpea flour? 

Linking up to Allergy Free Wednesday 


  1. I'm making this for the fourth time! Thanks :)

  2. I've been searching for this recipe today.

  3. Looks awesome, and so healthy - will definitely recommend this to my readers :)

    It's nice to meet you btw - I'm Sandra btw (I create sugar -and mostly dairy- and gluten free recipes on my blog - always happy to see healthy tasty food like yours!)

    All my best,


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