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Chris Ward

Real men eat quiche and like it.

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Bruce Feirstein's book* came out while I was at university. It was a something of a shock, really - I quite liked quiche, so was a bit disappointed to discover that it made me an unreal man. I shrugged off the pain and the hurt eventually, though, and have been making and eating quiche ever since.

It's originally German - 'Quiche' comes from the German word 'Kuchen' or cake - but from the part of Germany which is now French and called Lorraine, hence Quiche Lorraine, an open flan with smoked bacon. Add onions and it's Quiche Alsacienne, also a now-French part of Germany.

Whatever; it's really easy to make, especially if, like me, you cannot be faffed to mix flour and water and some fat together to make pastry. Frankly, a euro buys very nice pastry of many kinds here so I'm right out of faff when it comes to pastry.

I usually make two at a time, because. Well, because everyone in the family loves it basically and if I only make one there's none left for me by the time I get out of the kitchen to the dining table.

I unroll the bought puff pastry into a round baking tin, using the paper it's wrapped in to line the tin, then ensure the side bits are well formed up the sides of the tin.

Next, I fill it with my baking beans (some old white beans from somewhere, no idea how long I've had them now.) Ensure that you put a circle of greaseproof or silicone paper in the base of the quiche first or the beans will stick into the pastry. Ask me how I know. OK, I know because last time I forgot the lining.

Bake it for 10-15 minutes - this, you can tell your less professional friends, is 'Blind baking'.  I also pierce the pastry many times with a fork to allow the steam to escape - it's this expanding steam inside puff pastry which makes it rise.

IMG_5382 (1).jpg

My baking beans about to stick to the pastry because I forgot to line the inside of the pastry with greaseproof paper.
Once that's done, I take out the beans and allow it to cool while mixing the filling, and despite what traditionalists will try to insist you can add more or less anything you like. I've even made chocolate and marshmallow quiches which went down very well.

This time I made an Alsacienne, with bacon and onions, and a tuna and sun-dried tomato quiche which my wife Delphine and I loved and which the girls Scarlett and Roxanne would not touch because it looks suspiciously as though it contains vegetables (6 and 8 year olds are, as every parent knows, allergic to vegetables).

200g of lardons and 200g - approximately - of onions does the job.

The 'appareil', the mixture I make up in a jug, contains 200ml of cream (I use 30% fat content just because that's what's most widely sold in France, I'd use double/40% if I could find it), a healthy pinch of salt, some ground pepper and three whole eggs which all get whizzed up using my faithful stick mixer. 

I  add 100-200g of grated cheese to the base of the tart, then spread the bacon lardons (or tuna and chopped sun-dried tomatoes or the grated chocolate and chopped marshmallows) on top of that, then finish by pouring the appareil over that. My wife's family has a tradition of spreading a thick layer of mustard onto the base of the tart whenever they make tuna quiche. Tastes quite nice, but you need a LOT of mustard to be able to taste it at all. Into the oven for 15 minutes at 180°C, turn it round 180° and give it another 5-10 minutes. Until, basically, it doesn't wobble any more in the middle when you shake it gently.

It rises somewhat when you take it out of the oven and, if you can, serve it right now. Otherwise it will fall but still taste delicious.

IMG_5387 (1).jpg

* Yes, I am aware that it was a satirical book. No, I do not think that I am unreal. Or undead. I may be unlikely, however.

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I love quiche of all kinds, and make it at any provocation. One of my favorites is Southwestern -- with diced potatoes, lightly browned in oil and drained; black beans; whole kernel corn; and queso fresco, along with some ground red pepper, chili powder and a bit of cumin. I sprinkle some grated cheese on top, along with some chopped, drained tomato and diced avocado, to serve.

 

I find that about two ounces of goat cheese beaten into the egg-and-cream add a luscious degree of extra creaminess.

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Quiche is my most requested pot-luck dish and something I make a lot.  I remember being pleased to earn the approval of my former boss, a Frenchman, for its proper custard - he used to complain about people turning it into a "cheese pie."

One trick I picked up recently is to brush the crust with an egg wash immediately after blind-baking and return it to the oven for a minute or two to set it.  Cuts down on leaky crusts and I've always got the beaten eggs handy for the custard so it's no extra work.  Looks purdy and shiny-like, too :D!

 

33 minutes ago, kayb said:

I find that about two ounces of goat cheese beaten into the egg-and-cream add a luscious degree of extra creaminess.

I will try give this a try tomorrow.  Two quiches on the docket for tomorrow - one for brunch guests and one for a cousin bringing a new baby home from the hospital.

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OK.  I have to ask. Who other than Mr. Ward has made a quiche using pre-bought puff pastry?  It is not a criticism and if I could find prerolled puff pastry that would fit into a suitable dish I might be inclined to follow suit but it does seem odd to me.  Perhaps I've been living in a shoe?


Edited by Anna N (log)
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It is VERY common here. Every restaurant I worked in, including really gastronomic, high-end ones, buys in sheets of frozen puff pastry - big ones about 40x70 cms. I wrote about how I mistook one for a plastic chopping board back in the first or second post I made in this thread.

Frankly, it's impossible to tell it from good home made, and easy to tell it from bad home made. It's sold in every supermarket too, cheap stuff with vegetable oil for about 50 cents, the good stuff with butter for about €1.25. If I had to make it, I'd never make it it's too much of a faff.

It's about the only pastry I use anyway. It tastes lighter when you cook it. Well, to me anyway. And the advantage of buying puff is that you can use it as puff or, by pricking lots of holes in it, use it as a sort of brisée. And it works fine for sweet and savoury. And you can tell people you spent hours making it and they'll believe you.

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57 minutes ago, Anna N said:

OK.  I have to ask. Who other than Mr. Ward has made a quiche using pre-bought puff pastry?  It is not a criticism and if I could find prerolled puff pastry that would fit into a suitable dish I might be inclined to follow suit but it does seem odd to me.  Perhaps I've been living in a shoe?

 

I was wondering about that too. In my experience pâte brisée is standard for quiche. That's how I have always seen it or made it... Not saying it doesn't taste delicious too in puff pastry.


Edited by FrogPrincesse added quote for clarification (log)
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I'm relatively certain I'm a real man. At least, my dad's name definitely isn't Geppetto. I will eat quiche and not hate it but I wouldn't go as far as to say I actually like it. It's okay. If it's placed in front of me, it will be eaten. But I'd never go seeking it. Egg pot pie (quiche) kinda fits in the same slot as the Denver sandwich for me... I find them an odd choice for lunch or dinner. I rarely want that much egg that late in the day.

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Have to confess I make crustless quiches. Got in that habit on behalf of my child who has celiac disease, and never broke it.

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@Chris Ward  

 

Ive been thinning about The Q  recently.

 

and yes Ive made it a lot in times past etc  nice.  Spinach salad  Nice

 

but what Ive been thinking  about recently is this :

 

you might be able to help me , and I really mean this.

 

I was fortunate to live in France for two years  growing up.

 

and indeed was able to travel there , but not recently.

 

in the Fr. Alps region I had a Quiche that was a bit different  :

 

not eggy , but very creamy   w bacon of course. etc

 

does that ring a bell for you ?

 

all the quiche  Ive made back When were on the Eggy side.

 

can you point me to a Creamy bacon quiche ?

 

Id sure love it and would be in your debt !

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Obviously I am not the French chef but I saw this quiche in reference to the local girl's new cookbook Sqirl and it sounds like you might enjoy. It is on p25 Daily Quiche and is on the look inside from Amazonir?t=egulletcom-20&l=am2&o=1&a=141972231 


Edited by lesliec Added eG-friendly Amazon link (log)
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5 hours ago, Anna N said:

OK.  I have to ask. Who other than Mr. Ward has made a quiche using pre-bought puff pastry?  It is not a criticism and if I could find prerolled puff pastry that would fit into a suitable dish I might be inclined to follow suit but it does seem odd to me.  Perhaps I've been living in a shoe?

 

 

I have, just the other day I made these mini quiche like things.

The sheets are a standard size, but you can roll them out a bit. 

Our supermarkets all sell basic frozen pre rolled pastry of many types. Better pastry (as the OP uses) are available at gourmet food outlets. 

 

image.jpeg

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Y'all put me in the quiche mood. Actually, this one was something of a hybrid quiche/tortilla, or a quiche-tilla, I guess, as it had three medium grated Yukon Golds and half a grated onion in it, along with diced Black Forest ham and a sizeable portion of grated Gruyere.

 

quiche 1.jpg

 

I tossed the cherry tomatoes on top as an afterthought; they were the morning's harvest, likely about the last I'll get this season.

Made a fine lunch.

 

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its probably a tasty Quiche if you use Feta.

 

but its not a French Quiche.  still a tasty one Id bet.

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8 hours ago, Anna N said:

OK.  I have to ask. Who other than Mr. Ward has made a quiche using pre-bought puff pastry?  It is not a criticism and if I could find prerolled puff pastry that would fit into a suitable dish I might be inclined to follow suit but it does seem odd to me.  Perhaps I've been living in a shoe?

 

 

I'll cop to it. At one of my jobs we used it for our catering quiches, because we did a butt-load of catering (over $1 million my last year there) and served some 1500 or so lunches each day, and we just didn't have the resources to do the crust from scratch. 

 

It's certainly not my favorite crust for quiche, but it's a pragmatic option in commercial use. 

 

I always keep a box of President's Choice all-butter puff (a supermarket brand here in Canada) in my home freezer alongside a box of phyllo for when I need to turn out something on a tight timeline. Or just when I feel like it. It's not bad at all, so the only time now that I'll usually make up a batch from scratch is if I have a big project in hand and don't want to work with a whole bunch of piddly little sheets (or don't want to shell out the $$$). 

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4 hours ago, chromedome said:

 

I'll cop to it. At one of my jobs we used it for our catering quiches, because we did a butt-load of catering (over $1 million my last year there) and served some 1500 or so lunches each day, and we just didn't have the resources to do the crust from scratch. 

 

It's certainly not my favorite crust for quiche, but it's a pragmatic option in commercial use. 

 

I always keep a box of President's Choice all-butter puff (a supermarket brand here in Canada) in my home freezer alongside a box of phyllo for when I need to turn out something on a tight timeline. Or just when I feel like it. It's not bad at all, so the only time now that I'll usually make up a batch from scratch is if I have a big project in hand and don't want to work with a whole bunch of piddly little sheets (or don't want to shell out the $$$). 

Hmmm. That all-butter PC pastry no longer is!  Read the ingredient list. Very disappointing. Still it's the best I can get so I may try it for a quiche one of these days. 

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10 hours ago, rotuts said:

@Chris Ward  

 

Ive been thinning about The Q  recently.

 

and yes Ive made it a lot in times past etc  nice.  Spinach salad  Nice

 

but what Ive been thinking  about recently is this :

 

you might be able to help me , and I really mean this.

 

I was fortunate to live in France for two years  growing up.

 

and indeed was able to travel there , but not recently.

 

in the Fr. Alps region I had a Quiche that was a bit different  :

 

not eggy , but very creamy   w bacon of course. etc

 

does that ring a bell for you ?

 

all the quiche  Ive made back When were on the Eggy side.

 

can you point me to a Creamy bacon quiche ?

 

Id sure love it and would be in your debt !

Usually things like this taste more 'eggy' if you use whole eggs, so try using just yolks. I use 3 eggs in my recipe, you'd replace that with 6 or 7 yolks. Also, cream instead of milk, and double cream (40%) instead of single (30%). Also 'Mountain milk' is reputed for its high quality here, it costs about a third more than regular milk. It comes from cows which graze the high pastures in summer which give them lots of good vitamins and minerals. This leads to good mountain cheese (Emmenthal, Gruyere, Beaufort) but you should be careful buying it to make sure it's from summer milk. So buying now you'd buy 24 month aged cheese, but in February it'd be better to buy 18 month aged cheese to guarantee it comes from cows which have grazed on fresh grass, not the dried stuff they eat when they're penned up for the winter.

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Yep, I used to have a friend who supplied me butter puff but he and the family packed their bags and departed for greener pastures. So, this summer all my quiche will be from commercially made puff from a company who makes it in bulk - 10kg rolls. I have made a few samples using it and must admit that it is difficult telling it apart from the true butter puff.

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I'd go with pâté brisée as well. And probably a much higher rim as well as far more fat in the custard ... And while I do own a couple of French cookbooks I find the best recipe (at least to my taste) comes from Thomas Kellers "Bouchon"

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I take the lazy way out and make a frittata 

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This is all making me want quiche.  One of my favorite combinations is spinach and feta cheese, but there are some excellent alternatives being suggested here.  Thanks for the tutorial, Chris. I especially like the sound of sun-dried tomatoes in a quiche.

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I know the book is satire, and pardon my French, but I believe that a real man eats whatever the fuck he wants. A vote for quiche from me, also a good meal to make in a pinch, using leftovers and other randoms from around the fridge. 
 

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Quiche du jour chez blue_dolphin:

IMG_3809.jpg

Spinach, onion and red bell pepper.  I tried @kayb's trick of blending a few oz of softened goat cheese into the cream before whisking it with the eggs.  Very tasty!

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@Chris Ward when you are next shopping a series of pictures of what you can readily get in France would be lovely. :)

 

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4 hours ago, Tere said:

@Chris Ward when you are next shopping a series of pictures of what you can readily get in France would be lovely. :)

 

Will do, I'll be going to the market again on Saturday which is most interesting; supermarkets are supermarkets, right? 

Check the post on Tapenade to see a collection of jars - someone elsewhere and perhaps here wondered why I never buy fresh food....well Olives, capers, anchovies are all preserved....

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