Forget about that 80’s claim that “real men don’t eat quiche.” Real men are not assigning macho ratings to food. Quiche is easy to make, feels sophisticated, and will please nearly any palate. It’s a great main dish that will be perfecto for anything from brunch to dinner. It’s also very simple to make, despite its fancy French culinary roots. Use this recipe as your “foundation recipe,” substituting ingredients such as cubed ham, sausage, veggies, bacon, and herbs per your own likes.
This weekend we made a bacon/onion/spinach quiche as well as a leeks and onion quiche with Parmesan cheese. The foundation ingredients (crust, egg, half-and-half, cheese, salt, nutmeg) are always the same – just substitute the veggies/mushrooms (in blue below) with an equivalent amount of whatever veggies or meat you like. It doesn’t have to be exact. The type of cheese is also flexible: use the 4-cheese shredded blend, the Gruyere/Swiss shredded cheese, Parmesan, or a mix of whatever you like. It’s a fun recipe to play around with and it’s pretty forgiving.
For example, I omitted the mushrooms and artichoke hearts in the recipe below, and instead substituted one chopped small onion sautéed until soft and 4 slices of cooked bacon, chopped.
For the second quiche, I eliminated all three blue items and substituted 2
cups of finely chopped leeks and 1/2 small onion finely chopped, all sautéed in olive oil until soft before adding to the filling mixture. I also used shredded Parmesan cheese instead of the one indicated. I topped the quiche with thin tomato slices and a dusting of black pepper before popping it into the oven.
There is a difference of opinion in whether pie crusts should be pre-baked (blind baked) before adding the liquidy fillings. I don’t pre-bake for quiche recipes. I find that it’s not necessary and adds extra work, and in fact can lead to a very overdone crust edge, even when draped with foil. I don’t pre-bake and I never have problems with the bottom crust being fully cooked. I usually place the quiche lower than center, towards the bottom of the oven which allows more heat on the bottom of the quiche. If you use a glass dish, you can even monitor the doneness of the bottom crust.
Basic Quiche Recipe
- 1 frozen pie crust, thawed and put into oven-safe pie dish
- 1 cup half and half
- 4 eggs
- 1 cup Quattro Formaggio shredded cheese
- 1 ½ cup crimini mushrooms, chopped or sliced.
- ½ cup chopped canned artichoke hearts (not marinated!)
- 1 cup frozen spinach, thawed with all the water firmly squeezed out (once thawed and drained, it will measure about 1/4 cup packed)
- 1/8 tsp ground nutmeg
- ¼ tsp salt
1.) Preheat oven to 375º F.
2.) Saute the mushrooms in olive oil just until they start to brown (takes about a minute).
3.) Whisk together the eggs and half and half. Stir in the cheese, artichoke hearts, spinach, nutmeg, and salt. Add mushrooms.
4.) Pour mixture into pie crust and bake for 40 minutes (or until quiche is evenly slightly puffed up, firm to the touch in the center, and a knife inserted into center comes out clean).
5.) Let quiche cool for a few minutes, then slice and serve.