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Joy the Baker.

Easter Menu: Crème Fraiche Quiche Lorraine

#Easter Menu: Crème Fraiche Quiche Lorraine

Someone recently asked me what my desert island cookbook would be. You know… the one cookbook so dear to you, you’d take it as your sole cookbook to be stranded on a dessert island. Logically I should opt for a book with advice on building fires, catching fish and climbing coconut trees but, I’m envisioning a more Gilligan’s Island desert island situation (and I’m Thurston Howell III with trunks of kitchen supplies).

My answer: The Gourmet Cookbook. It has every recipe a home cook will ever need.  Classics. Tried and true recipes edited by the incomparable Ruth Reichl. Before I could afford my own copy of this cookbook, I used to sit with this book in the aisles of  of Borders (RIP) and handwrite recipes into my journal.  It was that serious for me.  This quiche recipe was one of the first recipes I hand wrote for myself. A classic Quiche Lorraine made with bacon and crème fraiche.  It’s wealthy. It’s rich. It’s such a luxury.  While I’ve made countless other quiches – this quiche Lorraine recipe remains truly elite.

Serve this quiche with this Spring Asparagus Salad with white beans and smoked almonds for a very classy Easer brunch moment – not stranded on a desert island (probably).

Here are the ingredients you’ll need to make this classic Quiche Lorraine recipe:

•  6 large eggs

•  a yellow onion

•  3/4 of a pound of bacon, chopped into small bits and crisped to golden

•  gruyere cheese, grated (or swiss cheese if you prefer)

•  sea salt and fresh cracked black pepper

•  crème fraiche which is a splurge but makes this quiche Lorraine so rich and creamy.  Or you can spend a little extra time to make your own crème fraiche and it’s super easy!

•  grated nutmeg

•  homemade buttermilk pie crust*, or you can use store-bought if you want to keep it easy

* This recipe makes two crusts.  If you’re making crust from scratch, roll and shape both pieces of dough. Wrap and freeze one pie crust (pie tin and all) for future use.

We’ll start things in a large skillet.  Cook the bacon pieces down to sizzling and golden.  This usually takes me about 7-9 minutes over medium heat.  Spoon the cooked bacon onto a paper towel lined plate and set aside.  This is where I start snacking on the warm bacon.  It’s called Baker’s Tax, it’s just a fact of life.

Drain all but a few tablespoons of bacon grease from the pan and return the skillet to medium heat.  Add the onions and stir around the pan until translucent and just beginning to brown – about five minutes.  At this point, the kitchen will smell like heaven.

In a large bowl whisk together the eggs, crème fraiche, salt, pepper, and nutmeg.

But what if you don’t have crème fraiche and don’t have time to make any?  Mix 1 2/3 cup heavy cream with 1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt.

I use a 9-inch pie plate for this quiche recipe and I love this USA Pan metal pie pan in particular.

Now let’s talk about the crust.  I’m notoriously lazy about par-baking my pie crust because I don’t mind a softer pie crust where the custard meets the crust.  If you feel strongly about a crisper crust, feel free to par bake this pastry using parchment paper and pie weights or dried beans.

Layer the bottom of the prepared pastry with cooled cooked onion, cooled cooked bacon pieces, and half of the grated cheese.  Pour the custard over the filling  to the pie plate’s edge.

Carefully transfer the unbaked quiche to the upper third rack in a preheated oven.  This isn’t for the faint of heart if you’ve generously filled the pie shell.  Place the pie plate on a rimmed baking sheet to catch any spills.

Bake until the quiche is deeply golden across the top and even lightly puffed from edge to center.  Give the quiche a quick jiggle to see how the custard is set. The center will be the last part of the quiche to set.  You know it’s set when the center stops shaking in a wave-like motion and moves in a more cohesive manner when shaken.

I like to serve this quiche… really, any which way.  It’s delicious warm, at room temperature, and even nice chilled.  It’s up to your preference.  Serve with a small green salad or fresh fruit.  This quiche Lorraine recipe makes the most savory and rich meal.  It’s all in the simplicity, really.  The French have it all the way right with this one – there’s no need to fuss with it.

 

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Description

A classic French quiche made with softened onions, crisp bacon, and rich creme fraiche.  It’s a perfect brunch moment and fantastic as leftovers for dinner. My recommendation? Cook up extra bacon for you to snack. It’s pretty irresistible.



  1. Roll the pie crust into a 9-inch metal pie dish. Refrigerate while you make the filling.
  2. In a skillet over medium heat cook bacon pieces until crisp. Remove from the pan and place on a plate lined with a few sheets of paper towels. Depending on how much fat is rendered from the bacon, you may want to drain a bit. I like to leave about 2 generous tablespoons of oil in the pan to caramelize the onions.
  3. Caramelize the onions over medium or medium-low heat until browned and tender. Scoop over the bacon to cool.
  4. Place a rack in the middle of the oven and preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Place a baking sheet on the rack to preheat with the oven.
  5. In a medium bowl, whisk crème fraiche to loosen slightly. Whisk in eggs, one at a time, to create a creamy smooth mixture. Finally, sprinkle in the salt, pepper, and nutmeg and whisk to combine.
  6. To assemble the quiche, sprinkle bacon and onions onto the bottom of the prepared pie shell. Sprinkle with half of the cheese. Pour the egg mixture over the filling and sprinkle with the rest of the cheese.
  7. Carefully place on the hot baking sheet on that middle rack and bake, rotating once, for 45 to 55 minutes, until the quiche is golden brown, puffed all over with a uniform jiggle (not a wave-like jiggle).
  8. Remove from the oven and allow to cool (at which point it will deflate) and serve warm or at room temperature. Store any leftovers covered in the fridge for up to four days.

Keywords: quiche, quiche lorraine, bacon, gruyere, easter, brunch, breakfast, pie crust

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