The Mother of All Quiches For Mother’s Day
Quiche Lorraine is perhaps the most famous of all quiches. Purists will tell you that only bacon, cream, and eggs are allowed. Though it is common to find other ingredients like Gruyere cheese, caramelized onions, and even chives. The original quiche Lorraine may not include cheese, but I won’t tell anyone if you decide to add one cup of shredded Gruyere to the mix.
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The dish we are going to make together is Quiche Lorraine, the mother of all quiches. I absolutely love the simplicity and ultra-creamy texture of France’s original quiche. At home, I often serve nothing more than a thick slice of quiche with a simple green salad and a glass of white wine.
Notes: A Roadmap for Any Quiche
Thick or Thin
One of your early decisions you will make is should you make a thin quiche or a thick one. Personally, I love my quiches thick and creamy, almost to the point where it resembles a Chicago deep-dish pizza. I use a 9-inch springform pan instead of the more traditional fluted tart pan. If you opt for the shallower tart pan, you will probably use a little less dough and need to adjust the cooking time down to about 30 minutes. Reserve any leftover dough for future quiches, tarts, etc.
Now you need to start thinking about what flavor of quiche you want to make. Whatever filling you decide in will have to follow a few trusted rules.
A Few General Rules for Making Perfect Quiches
1. Always sprinkle grated cheese on the bottom of the cooked quiche shell. This will help to prevent the quiche crust from getting soggy, though disregard If you are making a classic quiche Lorraine.
2. Never use more than 2 cups of cheese. Too much cheese will make the quiche not set properly.
3. Sprinkle your solid ingredients evenly over the cheese layer. This ensures everyone gets some of everything.
4. Always pre-cook and squeeze dry any vegetables before adding them to your quiche. The cream mixture will not set if there is too much excess liquid.
5. If using meat, be frugal, only use 6 to 8 ounces total.
6. Pour the cream filling over the vegetables, then bake immediately.
7. Always allow quiches to cool for about 30 minutes before cutting. They need time to come together and set. You will notice the difference resting makes when you go to slice it.
Traditional Quiche Lorraine
PREP TIME: 15 minutes | COOK TIME: 1 hour + 30 minutes | SERVES: 8
- 1 recipe flaky pastry
- 1 recipe cream filling
- 8 ounces of diced bacon
1. Preheat oven to 375°F.
2. Make, roll, and bake blind according to the instructions in the quiche primer.
3. Cook diced bacon slowly in a skillet until brown, about 5 minutes. Save fat for another use. Evenly spread bacon over the bottom of a quiche shell.
4. Cover with cream filling and then bake for 50 minutes, or until the center of the quiche is firm.
5. Always let quiches cool for about 30 minutes before cutting. They need time to come together and set. You will notice the difference resting makes when you go to slice it.
Tip: I have seen both ham and bacon used. Try different kinds of bacon for this quiche. My personal favorite is applewood smoked bacon, though I have also enjoyed pepper-crusted bacon.
Flaky Pastry Dough
Yield: one quiche
The very first step for all quiches is to make the flaky pastry dough. This versatile dough can be used for making everything from fresh fruit tarts and savory rustic galettes.
- 2 -1/3 cup all-purpose flour
- ½ teaspoon fine sea salt
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- ½ pound cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
- ½ cup cold water
1. To make the flaky pastry crust, combine the flour, salt, and baking powder in a food processor. Pulse for a few seconds just to combine well. Add the butter and pulse several times until the flour resembles coarse cornmeal. Slowly add the water with the motor running. Stop as soon as you have added the last drop of water. Do not worry, the dough will not be fully mixed at this point.
2. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface and mix it by hand until it comes together into a ball. Place in a large zip-top bag and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or overnight.
3. Lightly flour the work surface. Roll the dough out into a giant circle, about 15 inches round and 1/8 inch thick. To transfer it to a 9-inch springform pan (see notes), coil it around your rolling pin. Unwind the dough loosely over the pan. Gently push the dough down into the corners, leaving at least 1 inch of dough hanging over the top edge. The outer-upper lip of the springform pan has a curled edge facing outward. Pinch the excess dough tightly around the edge, leaving any excess dough hanging down the outside. It is important to pinch as firm as possible without tearing the dough. This will prevent the crust from shrinking. Refrigerate the crust for 2 hours or more.
4. Preheat the oven to 350°F.
No, this is not the moment to close your eyes or to cook in full darkness, but rather a simple technique to keep the quiche shell from getting soggy.
5. Transfer the pan to a baking sheet. Situate the baking sheet in the lower third of the oven. Bake for 10 minutes. Pull the baking sheet out of the oven and use a serrated knife to cut along the top edge of the pan. All the scraggly pastry pieces that were pinched into place will fall off.
Cream Filling (yield one Quiche)
This is the basic cream filling for all quiches. Only use heavy cream; milk has the potential to curdle when it cooks.
- 3 large eggs
- 3 large egg yolks
- 2 cups heavy cream
- ½ teaspoon fine sea salt
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
6. To make the basic quiche filling, in a large bowl, whisk the eggs, yolks, cream, salt, pepper, and nutmeg together. When the crust is done, increase the oven temperature to 375°F.
7. Pour the filling into the prebaked crust and bake until the filling is firm, about 50 minutes. Let it cool for about 30 minutes before cutting. It needs time to set. You will notice the difference resting makes when you slice it.