November 8, 2004
The Perfect Quiche

QUICHE2.JPGI don't make quiches very often. I suppose it's partly the fact that every bakery in Paris makes very good ones and partly the fact that my Critic is highly critical of egg-based foods. That is to say, he doesn't like them, not one bit, Sam-I-Am. When we have a cooked breakfast in England if the B&B waitress foolishly forgets to leave the egg off his plate there is a tense moment while he negotiates getting it onto MY plate - eating around it is not good enough.

But the Critic is in Vichy for a little while and so I can indulge my foodie urges without worrying about his prejudices. And I decided to make a big quiche including all my favourite ingredients, which you can never find if you scour all the bakeries of Paris. (Quiche lorraine and salmon-and-spinach are everywhere, but you don't see too many other varieties.)

What's more, the perfect quiche really is a changeable concept. It may not be the same two days running for any given person, and certainly mine is different from yours. However when I made this one it seemed absolutely perfect to me. As an added bonus, it used up a couple of ingredients in the fridge that were about to go out of date - hurrah!

One perfect quiche (serves one quiche fan as a lunch for a few days)

1 puff pastry recipe
7 large eggs
200 grams lardons or 5-6 strips of bacon
4 shallots
5-6 cherry tomatoes
1 cup grated sharp cheddar
1/4 nutmeg, grated
freshly ground pepper
1/3 cup creme fraiche or sour cream

In a large non-stick frying pan, cook the lardons or bacon (if the latter, cut in small strips). Once they are nearly done and have given up some grease, slice the shallots and add. Cook until the shallots are limp and sweet and the bacon cooked. Drain. Roll the pastry in the bottom of a large quiche pan. Spread the cheese in the bottom of the pan and then the drained onions and bacon mixture on top of that. If you happen to have some ham needing to be used up, you could add it at this point too, sliced in slivers. Beat the eggs, nutmeg, pepper and creme fraiche or sour cream and pour over the cheese, onions and bacon. Scatter the top of the quiche with sliced tomatoes and mushrooms. Bake in a hot oven (180/375) until brown on the top and set, about 40 minutes. This quiche is delicious hot or cold. Basically, it's my favourite eggy breakfast but in a portable format.

QUICHE.JPGIn fact, it was so good that the non-egg-eating Critic sampled it when he was home for the weekend and declared it very good! I thought that was supposed to be a woman's perogative...?

So what is YOUR perfect quiche?

Posted by Meg in Sussex at November 8, 2004 3:08 PM | TrackBack Print-friendly version

I'm a big fan of smoked gouda and smoked salmon. It probably should have a vegetable, but uh.. leeks are a vegetable, right? That's the veg.

Posted by barrett on November 9, 2004 at 8:45 AM

Salmon in a breakfast food demands tomatoes, capers, and red onion as accoutrements. At least one of those is a vegetable, and all are tasty.

The question then becomes: how does one incorporate a schmear into a quiche?

Posted by Sweth on November 9, 2004 at 10:03 AM

Is a quiche a breakfast food? I always thought of it the same way I think of cold pizza. They both are in practice excellent breakfast foods, but aren't intended in theory to be eaten before noon.

Posted by barrett on November 9, 2004 at 11:01 AM

Sweth, I think the more pressing question is how does one reconfigure a dozen bagels into a quiche-shaped crust?

Posted by Elsa on November 9, 2004 at 6:21 PM
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