Quiche is a flavourful custard baked in a pie crust. It is said to have originated in the French province of Lorraine, thus the best known of these egg pies is Quiche Lorraine. The basic ingredients of a quiche - eggs, milk and cheese - can support a variety of filling possibilities including ham, poultry, seafood, beef and/or vegetables. The filling usually takes minimal time and effort to prepare. The pie shell can be purchased or home-made, or omitted altogether, if desired, to cut down on calories, fat and preparation time.
Quiche can be served any time of day. Enjoy it as a brunch entrée with fruit, pair it with salad for lunch or dinner, or cut it into small servings to serve as an hors d'oeuvre.
Prepare or purchase a deep dish style pie shell in order to hold the quantity of custard and filling for the Basic Quiche.
Prebaking the pie shell is recommended so the crust does not become soggy when baked with the custard mixture.
To minimize shrinkage when baking pie shell, line the unbaked shell with 12-inch (30 cm) square of aluminum foil. Fill with raw rice or dried beans or peas. Cover rim of shell with strips of foil. Bake in a preheated 450°F (230°C) oven until lightly browned, about 10 minutes. Lift out foil and rice. Let shell cool on wire rack.
To make a crustless quiche, grease pie plate or quiche pan before adding filling.
Sour cream, yogurt or undiluted condensed cream soups may be substituted for part of the cream in the custard mixture.
Quiche can be prepared in a 9-inch (23 cm) square cake pan and cut into squares to serve as an hors d'oeuvre or snack.
Bake quiche in the lower third of the oven. The bottom crust will be crisp and the rim of the pie shell won't over-brown as readily.
Quiche can be served warm or cold.
Cooked quiche can be refrigerated for up to three days.
Quiche can be frozen prior to baking or after baking; baking first may make the quiche a little easier to manoeuvre in the freezer. To freeze quiche before baking: Place quiche on a tray or baking pan and freeze until firm. Wrap with freezer paper or heavy-duty (or double thickness) aluminium foil or slide quiche into a freezer bag. Seal, label and freeze for up to one month. When ready to serve, remove from freezer. Do not thaw. Unwrap and bake as usual, adding 10 to 20 minutes extra time. To freeze quiche after baking: Proceed as above. Do not thaw before reheating. Remove wrap and bake in a preheated 350°F oven for about 25 minutes, or until heated through.
(Makes 6 servings)
|1||9-inch (23 cm) prebaked pie shell||1|
|1 1/2 to 2 cups||light cream or undiluted evaporated milk||375 mL|
|1/2 tsp||salt (optional)||3 mL|
|1/4 tsp||pepper (optional)||1 mL|
|1/4 to 1/2 tsp||seasoning||1 to 2 mL|
Spread filling ingredients in pie shell.
Beat together eggs and combine with cream and desired seasonings.
Carefully pour egg mixture (custard) over the filling ingredients.
Bake in a preheated 350°F (180°C) for 35 to 40 minutes or until a knife inserted near the centre comes out clean. Let stand for 5 to 10 minutes before cutting into wedges to serve.
Filling and Seasoning Suggestions:
Quiche Lorraine: 6 slices cooked and crumbled bacon, 1/4 cup (50 mL) minced green onion, 1 cup (250 mL) shredded Swiss cheese, 1/4 teaspoon (1 mL) ground nutmeg, 1/4 teaspoon (1 mL) dry mustard.
Seafood Quiche: 1 cup (250 mL) cooked shrimp or crabmeat, 1/4 cup (50 mL) chopped onion, 1/4 cup (50 mL) chopped red pepper, 3/4 cup (175 mL) shredded Gruyere cheese, 1 teaspoon (50 mL) dried tarragon.
Spinach Quiche: 1 package (300 g/10 oz) frozen chopped spinach (defrosted and well drained), 1/2 cup (125 mL) crumbled feta cheese, 1/4 teaspoon (1 mL) dry mustard, 1/4 teaspoon (1 mL) dried tarragon.
Mushroom Quiche: 1 cup (250 mL) sliced and sautéed mushrooms, 1/2 cup (125 mL) shredded Cheddar cheese and 1/2 teaspoon (2 mL) dried basil.
Source: Egg Farmers of Ontario, www.eggsite.com