This was lunch today, light and savory. Quiche is a classic French baked savory dish that is basic pastry, eggs and milk or cream. But quiche has evolved into other acceptable variations to include cheese, meat, herbs and vegetables. I realised mum has not yet shared this recipe here which is a surprise because we make this every time there's thick cream in the fridge. This is one of those spontaneous baked dishes that we make at home and is a favourite of Dad - for afternoon tea and why not lunch too.
This basic quiche lorraine recipe is adapted from Margaret Fulton's Encyclopedia of Food and Cookery, which has now become mum's go-to-cookbook, a bible if I may say so. Here is mum's take on Margaret Fulton's quiche lorraine recipe, including
3-4 rashers of bacon, rind removed
3 thin slices Swiss or Gruyere cheese
(I use whatever is on hand - usually grated tasty cheese or parmesan, but I'm sure Gruyere will make such a big difference in the taste)
1 x 20-23cm (8-9 in) plain short crust pastry
(recipe is included in Margaret Fulton's encyclopedia which I will include here some other time, as we haven't really tried making our own pastry at home, so we just use store-bought* variety which is part of the convenience of making this savory dish)
1 tsp flour
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup cream
1/2 cup milk
1 tbsp melted butter
watercress or parsley to garnish
Mum uses a fluted baking tin with a removable bottom. When making this using store-bought short crust pastry, butter or use canola spray oil before pressing the pastry onto the pan. Press the pastry onto the pan gently, taking the shape of the curves and grooves of the tin. This needs to baked blind prior to using, so place baking paper onto the pastry and some pastry weights, or what we have at home, white beans. Sometimes I also use rice. The weights preserve the shape of the pastry which could fluff while baking. Bake in a the oven for 20 minutes. While this is baking, proceed to step 1)
1. Grill bacon until crisp. Drain and crumble into bite-size pieces.
(Mum takes the stove top pan fry route until golden. Prior to frying, the bacon are chopped or diced. Usually, I don't wait for it to be crisp as adding them into the wet mixture will lose than crispiness so I'm satisfied with just cooking the bacon).
2. Cut cheese same size as bacon. Place bacon and cheese in flan case in layers.
(The cutting of the cheese process is completely eliminated in mum's method as we use grated cheese. The cheese and bacon are layered onto the prepared pastry/pan. )
3. Beat together eggs, flour, nutmeg, salt, cayenne, cream and milk only until combined. Overbeating causes bubbles on top.
4. Stir in melted butter.
5. Strain over bacon and cheese.
(Because this is classified as a quick and easy dish to us, we don't usually strain the batter but just pour it onto the bacon and cheese.
6. Bake in a preheated oven (200 degrees C) for 10 minutes, then reduce heat to moderate 180 degrees C and bake for a further 20 minutes or until a knife inserted in filling comes out clean.
7. Garnish with watercress and serve warm with tossed salad.
When mum's making this, usually I add some chopped basil, or parsley and sometimes spinach. I also make a mushroom quiche, sometimes spinach and halved cherry tomato on top. Whatever it is that fancies your palate, its all up to you.