10.25.2006

Let There Be Quiche

For someone who doesn’t like eggs, I feel like I’ve been eating an awful lot of them as of late.
This creation evolved itself from a request to find a good quiche recipe. I’d started off simple, classic, with the idea of a quiche Lorraine in mind. It was the picture that sold me – halo of golden crust, pale golden quivery top crusted with bits of browned melted butter – and it seemed so convenient. I cannot think of this as a leftovers meal, but ostensibly it was a really good way to clean out the fridge: half a pie crust from last week, stray strips of bacon, and eggs left in the massive carton I’d purchased. But soon enough in too went the remains of the Fontiago (TJ’s cross of fontina and asiago), and the cream and whole milk were shunned for the 2% already in there. By the time I’d picked up extra scallion and tomato at the store, Lorraine had long since made her exit.

The miniature pie pans are an indulgence to be sure, and anytime I make anything in cute individual portions I cannot help thinking of Bridget Jones, who on one of her more intrepid streaks contemplates fulfillment by volunteering in a soup kitchen, but wishes to make as her friend Tom suggests, darling mini-bruschettas with pesto. I am completely helpless at the sight of darling mini-just about anything, and somehow having made four smaller versions makes me feel so much more accomplished and elegant than one larger one. Completely ridiculous, but there you are.
I am also extremely pleased to note that the quiches have restored my faith in the buttermilk pie crust recipe. The dough is an absolute dream to work with, rolling out easily and not a single tear on draping it in each pan, and now I know can be used for either savory or sweet fillings without adaptation. I pre-baked them slightly and finished them off filled on a baking sheet for easy transfer. The crust came out golden, buttery, rich and tender, and was just crisp enough to keep its shape out of the pan and provide a contrast for the creamy egg mixture – the whole thing will literally melt in your mouth. Forgive me for my effusiveness – this is phenomenal.

DARLING MINI-QUICHES
adapted from Quiche Lorraine in Essentials of Baking


1/2 recipe (1 crust)
Buttermilk Pie Crust Dough
4 slices thick-cut bacon

4 Tbsp shredded Fontiago or fontina cheese

2-3 large roma tomatoes, seeded and diced

5 scallions, thinly sliced

3 large eggs

1 - 1 1/2 c 2% milk

1/2 tsp salt

1/8 tsp white pepper

pinch nutmeg


Have the dough divided into fourths. Roll each fourth into a slightly-larger-than six-inch circle and gently drape into a 3-inch miniature nonstick pie pan. Fold over the edges around the rim of the pan and crimp with a fork. Prick the interior and sides of the crust with a fork. Repeat to form four crusts. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.

Preheat an oven to 400 F. Place the pie pans on a baking sheet and place in the oven. Bake the crusts for 4-5 minutes. Remove the crusts from the oven and reduce oven temperature to 350 F.
Meanwhile, microwave (I hear it removes more of the carcinogens) on paper towels for 2 minutes on high at a time until crisp. In a large measuring cup, beat the eggs. Add milk to eggs, along with salt, pepper, and nutmeg, and whisk together well.

Crumble a slice of bacon and line the bottom of a crust with it. Over the bacon, sprinkle 1 Tbsp shredded cheese. Sprinkle over about a Tbsp of diced tomato and then a sprinkling of scallion. Pour some of the beaten egg mixture into the crust over the layers until the filling has just about reached the rim. Repeat with the remaining pie shells. (I had a bit of ingredients and egg leftover; poured into silicone molds and baked at 375 for about 30 minutes it made a delicious if slightly runny version of
Kalyn's Egg Muffins. If you use the lesser amount of milk, you should be able to divide the egg evenly between the four pans with no problems.)
Place the crusts on their baking sheet back in the oven at 350 F. Bake for 30 minutes, turning the pie pans during baking so that crusts brown evenly.

Leftover quiches may be reheated slowly in a 300 F oven for about 15-20 minutes.

2 Comments:

Blogger Kalyn said...

They do sound yummy, with or without the crust. I love your individual pans.

1:29 AM  
Anonymous peabody said...

Quiche is not really eggs though....more like set up cream with cheese....MMMMMMM.

1:26 PM  

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