Nothing Says New Year's Like Quiche

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Our wonderful friends Stacey and Brian are always gracious enough to host parties at their place, especially on New Year's! Steve and I are now only a few "El" stops away from them, which is even better.

Since I was looking forward to spending a good night with friends ringing in '10, I decided to make a quiche. I mean, what screams parrr-tay better than cheese and eggy goodness? I found a recipe for a cheese and onion quiche in one of my favorite cook books, Best-Ever Pastry Cookbook. I picked this book up in the Barnes & Noble bargain section for $5 and it has never failed me.

I started with the really basic crust, so simple to make, and put it in my 9-inch removable bottom tart pan. While it looks pretty, I should have spent more time pressing the sides of the dough against the pan. You'll see why very soon.

I sauteed the onions with a whole lot of butter. This is about as close to cooking as I get. Fortunately, I like using our new Calphalon pans, so I find it more exciting these days to pull one of them out. The onions were sauteed until they were soft, golden, and smelling delicious.

After blind-baking the crust, I spread the onions out on the bottom, then covered with the cheese. (The recipe called for a grated cheddar or Grueyere. All I had was parmesan, which I finely grated with my zester. It works) On top of the cheese I added the egg and milk mixture. It looked like the crust was going to overflow and spew dairy all over my stove at any minute, but everything managed to stay put, much to my surprise.

After baking when the quiche was finally "set" (I looked it up, the quiche should still jiggle in the center and a toothpick should come out clean), I let it cool before removing the pan.

Now you can see what happens when you don't press the dough firmly against the side of the pan. When I blind-baked the crust, some of the sides moved away from the pan resulting in a misshapen crust. But no worries, I just told everyone I'd made a "rustic" quiche.

Or, by simply cropping down a picture, one would never know my mistake. Ha!

From what I heard, the quiche was mighty delicious and was enjoyed by many! I, unfortunately, did not get to try any of it. The New Year's Eve fairy decided to give me a wonderful cold to finish up the holiday season. Boo! By the time it came to actually eat the quiche, I had completely lost my appetite. But I would totally make this recipe again - it was so easy, I had every single ingredient on hand, and it made the house smell delicious!

Happy, happy 2010 everyone!

Cheese & Onion Quiche

For the filling:
2 T unsalted butter
1 large onion
3 Eggs
1 1/4 C light cream or milk (I used skim milk)
1/4 tsp nutmeg
3 1/2 oz hard cheese, such as Cheddar or Gruyere, grated (I used parmesan)
Salt and ground black pepper

For the pastry:
1 3/4 C all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 C unsalted butter, dized
4 T chilled water

To Make the Pastry
Sift the flour and salt into a small bowl. Cut in the butter until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs. Add 3 T of the water and mix to a firm dough, adding more water if required. Knead until smooth, wrap in plastic wrap and chill for 20 minutes.

Roll out the dough on a clean, lightly floured work surface and line a 9-inch tart pan with removable bottom. Press the pastry FIRMLY into the sides and base of the tin and let it rise above the rim by about 1/2 inch to allow for a little shrinkage during cooking. Prick the pastry base all over with a fork.

Line the pastry case with foil and baking beans (I used brown rice) and chill again for about 15 minutes. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F with a baking sheet placed in it. Stand the tart pan on the baking sheet and bake blind for 15 minutes.

Remove the foil and beans from the pastry case and return it to the oven for 5 more minutes. Remove the pastry case from the oven along with the baking sheet and lower the oven temperature to 350 degrees F.

To Make the Filling
Melt the butter in a large, heavy frying pan. Add the onion and saute for about 10 minutes until the onion is soft and golden. Beat the eggs and the cream or milk together in a bowl. Add the grated nutmeg and seasoning to taste.

Spoon the onion mixture into the cooked pastry case and evenly sprinkle over the cheese. Pour the egg and cream/milk mixture slowly over the filling. Bake the quiche for 35-40 minutes, or until the filling as just set. Remove from the oven, leave to cool, then gently ease the quiche out of the tin and transfer to a serving place. Enjoy!

1 comment:

HisBirdie (Ali) said...

Your crust looks awesome! Jason would like to know when he can come over for quiche because I never make him any ;)

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