26 December 2013

Bacon and Cheddar Quiche

Quiche hadn't been on the menu for a while, so one day when I needed to figure out what I could make for dinner that wouldn't require a trip to the market, this was it. You can make a quiche out of anything, so I took an inventory of the larder.

I always have flour, butter and a few kinds of cheese; but what else did I have on hand? I had exactly 6 ounces of bacon, a little piece of onion, eggs and milk. Simple ingredients, wonderful flavors; resist the urge to embellish.

About "blind" baking or par-baking a pie shell: You can use pie weights if you want to, but I never do. And I never have trouble with the pastry sliding down into the dish. I think that is because I rest/chill the pastry before rolling it out. Then I roll it out and settle it into the pie plate without stretching it, do a nice crimped edge, and pop it back into the fridge for another rest/chill before baking. And it never bubbles up on the bottom or slithers down the sides; it comes out just the way it went in!


Bacon and Cheddar Quiche

(Makes one 9-inch quiche)

The Pastry (or my Gluten-Free Pie Crust)

1 1/4 dip-and-sweep cups (6.25 ounces) unbleached all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon baking powder
1 stick (4 ounces) unsalted butter, well chilled
4 tablespoons ice water
1 1/2 teaspoons cider vinegar
1 tablespoon additional ice water, if needed

The Filling

6 ounces bacon, cut into 1/4-inch slices (I always use uncured, no added nitrates or nitrites)
1/4 cup chopped onion
4 ounces sharp Cheddar cheese, shredded
4 large eggs
1 3/4 cups milk
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon marjoram
Pinch crushed red pepper flakes

1 In medium bowl, whisk together flour, salt and baking powder. With coarse grater, grate butter into flour bowl. With fingers, quickly work the butter into the flour, leaving some pieces the size of small peas.

2 In small bowl, combine water and vinegar. Sprinkle over flour mixture while stirring with large fork. Add a little more water, if needed.

3 Turn dough out onto a piece of plastic wrap and flatten slightly into a 4-inch disk; double wrap; refrigerate for one hour or up to four days. May be frozen for up to a month; defrost, wrapped, in the refrigerator.

4 If dough is thoroughly chilled, let it stand at room temperature for 15 minutes before rolling. Butter a 9-inch glass pie plate. On lightly floured surface, roll out disk to a 13-inch circle about 1/8 inch thick. Place pastry in pie plate, being careful to not stretch the dough. Crimp the edge. (Sometimes you need to chill the pastry a bit before crimping.) Cover loosely and refrigerate* for 30 minutes. During last 15 minutes, preheat oven to 375 degrees. Prick the bottom of the crust all over with a fork. Bake the thoroughly chilled crust for 20 minutes.

5 *While pie shell is chilling and then baking, prepare filling. In skillet, sauté the bacon pieces until slightly crisp; drain on paper towel. Pour most of fat out of the skillet and sauté the onions for 5 minutes.

6 Remove par-baked pie shell from the oven; leave the oven at 375 degrees. In small bowl (I use a 1-quart glass measure), combine eggs, milk, salt, pepper and herbs. Scatter a third of the cheese over the crust, then the onion, half the remaining cheese, the bacon, half the remaining cheese. Pour in the filling, and sprinkle with remaining cheese. Bake at 375 degrees for about 35 minutes or until crust is golden and knife inserted in center comes out clean.

Note: Vegetarians might like my Vegetable Quiche (Julia Child fans might enjoy the post because it includes one of my Julia stories). And there are lots of quiche recipes in Julia's Mastering the Art of French Cooking (2 Volume Set).


Cranberry Morning said...

The pie crust looks perfect, Jean! And the quiche sounds so good. I've been substituting AppleGate nitrate-free bacon to avoid headaches and used it in our Christmas Eve clam chowder. And our favorite Cheddar lately has been the Kerry Gold Irish Cheddar (I think that's what it's called. I can't find the label now. Anyway it's an aged white cheddar and SO good!) Thanks for the recipe. Will try it soon.

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Thanks, Judy! I always get uncured, nitrate-free bacon, too, like AppleGate or Niman Ranch. Let me know how the recipe turns out for you!

Karen Lange said...

It has been forever since I made quiche. You've inspired me, thank you! Our family always gets together for New Year's Eve, and this might be a great addition to the menu.

Happy New Year! :)

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Karen, thanks! I think it's a good thing to have when people are in and out and eating at different times, since you can have it in the fridge and heat up a slice in the microwave any time.

Liz That Skinny Chick Can Bake said...

Definitely a perfect pie crust...and the filling sounds delish!!! This would be a hit at my house :)

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Thanks, Liz! Everything's better in a pie, I always say!

Angie's Recipes said...

I haven't made or had quiche in a really long while, Jean. This looks so beautifully golden brown and inviting.
Happy New Year to you!

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Angie, thanks! I go years without making a certain thing, then I make it all the time for a while (probably overdoing it!), then not, etc. Sometimes I think I should make a schedule!

~Lavender Dreamer~ said...

This sounds so good. I'm saving the recipe to make soon. It's nice to have a quiche that doesn't have cream or half and half. Thanks for sharing it! (and I only buy uncured bacon, too)

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Thank you, Lavender Dreamer! Let me know how it turns out for you.

Thomas "Sully" Sullivan said...

“Pie weights” and “blind baking” – who knew? Thought I understood everything about pies, but I really need to study for my Boards before I’ll be certified. I mean, my pie nomenclature has terms like “glurp” and “thumb deep.” And I was flat out astonished to learn that you could SLICE a pie. Seems like a needless waste of time. I thought all servings were round and went from edge to edge, to be devoured in one sitting. But then you’re into that sampler stuff, sharing and presentation. I’m more into the eat-until-gone school of appetite appeasement. When you lick the plate clean, you don’t have to wash dishes. Just sayin’.

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Oh, yes, I like to slice it and present it properly. We won't talk about those few occasions when I've eaten a whole pie by myself, little by little, slice by tiny slice, all day long (to the exclusion anything else). "All pie, all the time" is not a bad motto!

Richard Sheppard said...

Ok, I've tried Quiche on a couple of occasions and I like it ok. Best when served warm. Cold? Well . . . not so much. But I bet this quiche is delicious right out of the oven. And yes, it just might be the bacon!

I've made more recipes off your website Jean than probably any cookbook I've ever owned so who knows, someday maybe I'll even make your quiche!

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Richard, thank you so much! I'm glad you like so many of my recipes! I made this again last night, and my husband really enjoyed it.

Amy at love made my home said...

Oh, I love quiche!! Must have this again sometime soon. Hope you had a good Christmas and that you have a great 2014! xx

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Amy, thanks! I hope you have a terrific 2014, too!

Grant said...

Quiche! Yum! Ok, you've inspired me, we are going to do quiche for dinner tonight! Hope it looks as good as yours. And horror of horrors... you just know I'll be eating it with a good dollop of ketchup on it :-) cause bein' an aussie, we put ketchup (or as we prefer to call it, tomato sauce) on anything that resembles pie :-)

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Okay, Grant, you go ahead and put ketchup on it -- I'm not one to fight food traditions!

yummychunklet said...

What a delicious looking quiche!

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Thanks, yummychunklet!

Ruth Schiffmann said...

Oh-oh, I'm running out of holiday gathering (and reasons to cook dishes like this!)

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Ruth, you can always make it for a little gathering of writer friends, right?

TONY said...

Ee bah gum as uz northerners say. Reet tasty this one lass. Can't beat a nice quiche fer tea.

Sounds perfect Jean. I like Italian versions with sum dried tomatoes and various herbs. But a good bacon and cheese one does very nicely.

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Thanks, Tony! We love dried tomatoes, too. Reet tasty, laddie! And the great thing about quiche is that you can use what you have. I'm out of dried tomatoes just now; used the last of them for a focaccia.

Charles said...

Great looking pie crust and quiche Jean! I didn't have a quiche in... well, years! Wow, can't believe it was so long!

Re: blind baking - unlike you, unfortunately I do have problems with the pastry slipping gracefully down the sides, usually because I'm in a rush and can't be bothered to let anything rest (if I can't, why should the pastry be allowed?!). In a lot of restaurants they'll blind bake by simply pressing doubled-up kitchen foil to the pastry. I've found that works perfectly - no need to have a load of baking beans rolling around the kitchen! :D

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Thanks, Charles! I like that - 'If I can't [rest], why should the pastry be allowed to?' :D I certainly had no rest today in the kitchen, but fortunately my sweet husband came in and did the cleanup!

Tanna said...

Quiche is an all time favorite... I used to make them all the time and somehow they slipped off the menu. Thank you for this wonderful reminder and recipe. Happy New Year. blessings ~ tanna

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Thanks, Tanna! I do that, too -- make something often (maybe too often!) then not again for a long time.

Unknown said...

I love quiche. Its easy, versatile and my whole family will eat it without complaining, Such a win.

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Kristin, I love that - "my whole family will eat it without complaining" - now, that IS saying something! :-)