It’s Pi Day!
This annual celebration of the mathematical constant pi (3.14) was actually designated by the US House of Representatives in 2009!
Now, most of us aren’t scientists or mathematicians – but isn’t is oh, so interesting that Stephen Hawking, one of the great visionary scientific minds of our time, happens to pass away on Pi Day?? (RIP, Stephen) – so for most of us, Pi Day is simply a wonderful excuse to eat some delicious pie.
And that’s what we do. Stores, restaurants and pizzerias have specials on pies, or we make our own.
My husband is a pie fanatic, and over the years I’ve made key lime pie (his favorite), chocolate pie, cream pies, and so on.
This year I’m sharing a recipe for a healthier – and more fertility friendly – pie.
What?! Pie can be fertility friendly?
Yes! (sort of)
A different kind of pie, though – a more savory pie. Quiche!
Yep, quiche, in my book, is a type of pie.
And I’ve got a killer spinach quiche recipe for you.
There are some options for making the quiche – if you want it to be healthier you can eliminate the crust and make a crustless quiche. If you want to eliminate dairy I’ve included options for substitutions for making a vegan quiche.
This quiche is great because of all the spinach. A dark leafy green vegetable, spinach is loaded with folate, a B-vitamin which helps improve ovulation. (issues with ovulation are the leading cause of female infertility). Folate also helps prevent birth defects like spina bifida, but usually by the time you know you’re pregnant it’s too late to begin taking it, so it’s important to up your folate intake while trying to conceive). Spinach is also a good source of iron and Vitamin C.
The fertility community is divided on the value of dairy in the fertility diet, with some experts recommending some full-fat dairy in the diet, others asserting that only low-fat dairy is acceptable, while still others say dairy should be completely eliminated. It’s really confusing, and hard to know the right thing to do with all of this conflicting information.
Researchers from Harvard University studied this, and found that women who had moderate amounts of full-fat dairy conceived more easily than women who had excessive amounts of dairy AND women who had moderate amounts of low-fat dairy. This suggests that some dairy is okay, and to make it full-fat, organic and hormone free.
In addition, too much dairy in the diet leads to inflammation, which is the seat of chronic illness (which we don’t want!).
I’m personally not a huge fan of dairy, so I avoid it as much as I can, with the exception of cheese (I love cheese!), but I only have it in moderation. I also eat eggs occasionally, and eggs have been shown to be beneficial for fertility, as egg yolks are rich in choline, a nutrient which is also important for lowering the risk of birth defects and improving brain function and memory in your baby, all the way through to its adulthood. Adequate choline consumption can also lower risk for miscarriage. So, eat your eggs!
So milk and eggs are okay in moderate amounts. As far as health benefits of cheese, I got nothin’ – but it’s so yummy and it’s okay to have some every once in a while, guilt free – as long as it’s only occasionally! (or, you can have vegan cheese substitute).
- 1 9-inch pie crust (either made from scratch or store bought) (optional)
- 2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1 small onion, chopped (about 1/2 cup)
- 1 garlic clove, pressed
- 1/2 cup full-fat organic milk (vegan: almond milk)
- 3 eggs, beated (if going vegan, grind 3 Tbsp chia seeds, stir in 9 Tbsp water, let sit for 30 minutes before using)
- 1 lb fresh spinach, stems removed
- 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese (or cheese substitute)
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. If using pie crust pre-bake crust at 375 for 10 minutes. Set aside. If making a crustless quiche, spray a 9-inch pie plate with olive oil spray.
Heat oil in skillet over medium heat. Add onion and cook until onion is slightly brown, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and cook 1 more minute. Add spinach and cook until slightly wilted, a few more minutes. Set aside and let cool.
Beat eggs in bowl. Add milk or almond milk. Add this to onion-spinach mixture, mixing well, and add sea salt and pepper to taste. This is your pie filling.
If you want, you can also have fun adding things to your pie filling, like mushrooms, diced red pepper or sundried tomatoes (yum!)!
Place shredded cheese at bottom of pre-baked pie crust or pie plate. Pour in pie filling.
Bake for 35 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. You may need to cover the edges with aluminum foil to prevent edges from getting too brown. If making a crustless quiche, add about 10 minutes to baking time.
Let quiche cool for about 10 minutes before slicing and serving. If you try this one, I’d love to hear how you like it – leave a comment below!
Happy Pi Day!
To your fertility,