If you are familiar with the phrase ‘Real Men Don’t Eat Quiche’ (taken from a 1982 book of the same name which satirized masculine stereotypes), you also remember the dish as a wonderful and easily prepared entertaining idea. For all I know, men referred to it as an egg and meat pie, but however classified, quiche became a fabulous choice for brunch menus.
At about the same time of its introduction, Brunch (portmanteau of Breakfast and Lunch) became a late morning/early afternoon darling part of local chefs’ and restaurateurs’ ‘one meal all you can eat’ Sunday buffet, prix fixe, offered with a complimentary cocktail. Brunches became destinations at restaurants as well as very popular home entertaining ideas.
Quiches of many varieties became stars because of their simple preparation, huge taste, and ease of preparation. This is a recipe for Quiche which is typically considered a savory, open-faced pastry crust dish with a filling of savory custard.
“Lorraine” is a popular variant that was originally an open pie with a filling of custard with smoked bacon. It was only later that cheese was added. The origin of quiche lorraine is rural and sported a rustic style: it was cooked in a cast iron pan and the pastry edges were not crimped. Today, quiche lorraine is served throughout France and has a modern look with a decorative pastry crust.
In France, the version is unlike that served in the United States; the bacon is cubed, no onions are added and the custard base is thicker. (source: Wikipedia). The recipe offered here is a derivation of the original, which is notably older than the 1982 book mentioned.
My recipe card is as dog-eared as my other personal favorites of 30-plus years and was probably lifted from a ‘foodie’ or cooking magazine of the 1980s era.
The product remains popular with guests, either for a Sunday brunch as part of a kitchen buffet, or an easy supper, teamed with salad and bread. The basic custard can be altered with ingredients of your choice to make it other than “Lorraine.”
Spinach is an alternate favorite and would appeal to lacto-ovo vegetarian friends. It’s difficult to believe that cheese was a latecomer to the original quiche because it so completes this savory dish! I like to make this in a deep-dish fluted 9” removable bottom tart pan, but a deep-dish pie plate will also work.
1 9-inch pie crust (if you enjoy rolling dough, use your own, otherwise purchase a 9” deep dish frozen one)
1-1/2 C. light cream
1/2 C. diced ham (easy to order from the local grocery deli. Ask for a slab about 1/4 inch thick and cut it into cubes when you get home) (I like the ham addition to the original recipe!)
1/2 C. sweated diced onion
5 (or 8)
strips of chopped crisp bacon (I use a healthy amt. of bacon but cut away most of the fat before it’s cooked to assure myself that I’m being healthy!)
1/3 lb. of grated Swiss (good stuff please, such as combination of Emmenthaler and Gruyere)
4 beaten eggs
1/2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
1/2 tsp. prepared mustard (preferably Dijon)
1/8 tsp. nutmeg (preferably freshly grated)
1/8 tsp. salt
Prepare your baking vessel with nonstick spray and line it with your homemade or store-bought thawed pie dough; crimp decoratively. Blind bake at 350 degrees for about 10 minutes. (To “blind bake”**, dock the dough and fill the pan with some oil lined with dried beans and place in the oven for about 5-7 minutes; remove the foil package and continue to bake the dough for a few more minutes, until firmed up but not fully cooked….not all browned).
If using a removable bottom tart pan, line the outside with sheet of foil in the event of leakage when filled with the egg custard.
Blend all ingredients except bacon, ham, and cheese
Sprinkle bacon, ham, and cheese on the bottom of your pre-baked pie shell and then add blended ingredients.
Bake in a pre-heated 350 degree oven for 40-50 minutes. Allow the quiche to rest 5-10 minutes prior to slicing.
** — For blind baking, store raw rice or beans in some foil in your pantry for repeated use. Lasts for years!