The first post I made on this blog said that I wanted this to be more of a baking blog and possibly a cooking blog someday, and now I’m blogging about quiche. It’s a bit borderline I suppose, as while making quiche does involve some actual cooking, you’re basically baking some sort of savory egg pie, and just because it’s savory doesn’t mean you’re not baking right? And there’s pastry involved. So it is baking on some level. Although Beef Wellington contains pastry, and while I do make it all the time, I’m not sure I would consider that baking. Chicken pot pie more resembles baking for me too. I suppose in the end it’s all subjective.
First, a bit about the title of this post. The phrase “quiche me” always reminds me of my friend Jamie, as she and one of her exes were talking about creating a quiche delivery service named “Quiche Me” where they would dress up as French people with painted on mustaches in order to deliver them. Perhaps that concept is what led her to create her clown burlesque troop, “Burlesque La Moustache Je T’aime“, or the BLaM JeTs for short. (The video I linked to is a performance they did at a yearly Santa Cruz show, What is Erotic?, and if you look closely you can see the back of my head in the audience.) Anyway, whenever I think of quiche, I think of that phrase, and I think of her. Which is quite a lot as honestly, I love quiche.
For me quiche is a decadent dish which is incredibly easy to make as it can be made with a small number of ingredients. The most difficult part is the pie crust, and while this is made incredibly easy due to the ease of buying pre-made pie crust, I much prefer to make my own. I always use the Martha Stewart pie crust recipe, as I find it quite easy and very tasty, but I have been tempted to use the pie crust recipe out of my Serendipity 3 cookbook. (The people who created Serendipity 3 are my heroes, they definitely know how to make amazing desserts, and when I make another dessert from their cookbook, I will go into more detail about it.) The simplest filling is basically cheese, milk (or cream), and cheese (any kind works, but I commonly use Gruyere, Emmental, or Jarlsberg). The versatility of quiche comes from the fillings added. One of my favorites is Quiche Lorraine, which adds bacon and onion to the filling, and sometimes I like to add fennel for added flavor.
Last night, I decided to use onion, shitake mushrooms, asparagus, and spanish chorizo in my quiche. I made the dough earlier in the day and put it in the fridge in order to get nice and set. I’ve noticed that I have quite a warm kitchen, and pastry crust can be very temperamental due to getting too warm. I’ve had many problems with it sticking to my countertop (which is stone, so it works quite well for rolling pastry crust). I also put some of the wine ice packs that we have on the counter top for a while first in order to attempt to cool down the stone. I rolled it out and baked the pastry crust first. I did it at about 180 degrees C for about 8 minutes (although I did end up baking it a bit too long). To make the filling, I always use three large eggs and 1 cup (American) of milk. I usually use whole milk as I find the extra fat really helps the quiche filling reach a nice consistency, and using skimmed or party-skimmed makes the filling a bit too anemic. If you want to go with a really decadent quiche, you can use half and half (single cream in the UK) or whipping cream (double cream in the UK) instead of the milk. It makes for an even more luxurious filling, and I have done this on occasion, but usually when I’m having guests over and want to make the quiche quite special. Then it’s just a matter of grating some cheese to put in it. I used something new last night, Ossau Iraty from France, and it had quite a mild, nutty flavor. Then it’s just a matter of sauteing the rest of the ingredients, adding it to the egg mixture, pouring it into the pie crust and baking until it’s done. Mine looked like this when I took it out of the oven:
It was actually a bit underdone, as when I tried to cut into it it was a bit runny, so I put it back in the oven and let it finish. Quiche is incredibly easy to serve, as I usually serve it with a salad if we’re having it for lunch or dinner. It also can be served for breakfast with some nice hash browns, potatoes, or fruit. It’s one of the things that I love about it. I served it with a salad last night and a little bit of balsamic glaze:
Quiche also always brings back special memories of when Tom and I had first started dating. He was living in San Francisco at the time, and he lived quite close to this restaurant we would go get breakfast and lunch at sometimes, Cafe Divine. I was always amused by the display of divine things that they have there, as one of them was a picture of the drag queen Divine. The restaurant always had some sort of quiche on special, and we would often get it there. Sometimes they’d have two choices and we couldn’t decide, so we’d split them. My favorites were the Quiche Lorraine and the asparagus quiche. Early on I told Tom that I’d have to make him my quiche (as I am quite fond of it, and have made several) to see how it compared. He told me my pastry is better. I never could figure out exactly what they did to their onions in the Quiche Lorraine, as they were always so decadent tasting. I assume they braised them in butter and cream, as that makes almost everything taste better, but it’s a bit too much to be doing at home. Anyway, I still love to make it as it reminds me of San Francisco early in our relationship, which, in my opinion, is never a bad thing.