Quiche Lorraine: How to Make Breakfast Pie

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quiche breakfast

Don’t like Quiche: Hear Me Out

Quiche Lorraine got a bad rap in the 80s, all started by the tongue-in-cheek book Real Men Don’t Eat Quiche, denouncing the brunch-fare as unsuitable for the alpha male. Truth be told, any man threatened by a bacon-and-egg pie has some deeper issues to explore. I’m not completely innocent of falling victim to the notion of gender-specific foods. On a visit to France, I warmed up to the famed sandwich Croque Madame over the less redolent Croque Monsieur, and why wouldn’t I since it came with an egg on top. I always wondered if the wait staff chortled behind kitchen doors at my expense. “Croque Madame for girly man on table 19, s’il vous plaît.” To this day, I’m not really sure if it’s cool for a Frenchman (or any man) to order a Croque Madame in la République. (Feel free to fill me in, if you know of such cultural norms.)

Cream, eggs, and cheese: the perfect custardy combo

Breakfast Bias Be Gone!

And anyone who poo-poos Quiche Lorraine has likely never indulged in the encrusted custardy slab. Let’s face it, with ingredients like cream, bacon, cheese, and eggs, each slice is a veritable hearty American breakfast disguised as a genteel French pastry. So toss any disapproving preconceptions down the garbage disposal, and get ready to make Quiche Lorraine.

Gild this breakfast lily by adding caramelized onions and bacon.
I like to make my quiche in a deep pie or tart pan, making for a richer slice in my opinion.
There’s a decadent satisfaction to quiche, and as an added bonus it’s the perfect vehicle for customization. Here I added diced ham to the mix.

RECIPE: Quiche Lorraine

Ingredients

  • Pastry for 9-10″ pie or tart shell
  • 6 slices of bacon – chopped into 1/2″ bits
  • 1 large onion – minced into small bits
  • 2 Cups Cream – half and half works fine, too
  • 5 large eggs – large, beaten
  • 1 Cup grated Swiss cheese
  • 1/4 Cup grated Parmesan cheese (or pecorino, or romano)
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg

Directions

  1. PASTRY
  2. Preheat oven to 450° F
  3. Roll out dough to 1/8″ and fit in 9-10″ pie plate or fluted 10″ tart pan.
  4. Refrigerate while assembling the filling.
  5. FILLING
  6. Sauté onions and bacon until browned and caramelized, respectively.
  7. Drain fat.
  8. In a bowl, thoroughly mix all remaining ingredients with bacon and onions
  9. Remove chilled dough and pour custard mixture in leaving 1/4″ from top of rim.
  10. BAKING
  11. Place on middle rack of 450° F oven
  12. Bake for 20 minutes
  13. Reduce heat to 350° F
  14. Bake for additional 15-30 minutes, depending upon pan size, and until an inserted knife about 3 inches from the edge comes out clean.
  15. NOTES
  16. The middle may still giggle a little, (make that jiggle) but that’s okay as the quiche will continue to cook while cooling.
  17. Refrigerate any leftovers.
  18. Add flavor-rich ingredients you like. Sometimes I plop in chopped artichoke hearts or diced ham or red peppers or spinach.
  19. And if you don’t have interest or time in making dough, use a ready-made shell or simply add the filling to ramekins or over-safe mugs and bake — breakfast in a cup!
  20. My mom freezes them in muffin tins, then bakes or reheats later as individual servings.
  21. UPDATE: My mom prefers to make a frittata in a pie plate, bake it up, slice individual servings, freeze, place in a freezer bag to retrieve and microwave when an easy meal is needed.
  22. UPDATE: Here’s the pie dough recipe I use (make two pie shells) from King Arthur Baking – Classic Double Crust
Any leftover filling goes into a ramekin or two for a delicious crust-free quiche. Or you can make an entire batch of mini-quiches by just eliminating the crust option and filling up cups or ramekins.

Buddy, party of one, you’re table is ready!

Happy Baking my friends, may the quiche be with you!

30 COMMENTS

  1. Tom, you are an inspirer. I’ve not made quiche in a eons (for no good reason), and while mine won’t look as beautiful as yours (fit for a coffee table book), it’s all about the taste, really, isn’t it? Thanks for sharing the recipe and another we bit about your life. Hope you’re staying well and happy (it seems so). My favourite line: “the middle may still giggle a bit”. Perfect! You truly are inspiration.

    • Hi Cheryl, thank you for such kind words. During our year-long “house arrest” I’ve been feeling anything but. Your words are a very nice reminder to go easy on ourselves and share what we can with others. We are all in this together. Big virtual hug!

  2. a little jiggle always makes me giggle! that’s one hell of a wickedly wonderful looking quiche. i am going to have to make this very soon. a masterpiece, really. i am totally gender-neutral when it comes to food. or anything else for that matter!

    • Thanks Joyce, I don’t know if it’s me oh the precipice of geezer-hood or the relative isolation, but my proofing and writing skills are a bit rusty lately. Though, I have to agree with you on that typo, “a little jiggle makes me giggle…” 😉

  3. Tom thanks for the recipe. I have been to France but for some reason did not order Quiche Lorraine there were too many other yummy foods to chose from. Now I can indulge at home.
    I do make quiche frequently but it is usually feta cheese, onion, and spinach or ham, onion, and cheddar cheese. I usually share it with my brother and his wife. He always says, ” you know real men do not eat Quiche” with a big smile on his face. I had to laugh since I had never heard of the book you mentioned. Now I know they do eat quiche and love it. Glad you are your own man and willing to share your yummy recipe.

    By the way I love the typo ” the middle may still giggle a bit.” Leave it in the recipe.

    Your friend, Janet and Teddi say arf, arf to your Supreme Commander, Buddy

    • Oh Janet, that’s too funny. And I love the ingredient list in your quiche, what’s not to like?! And may your brother and his wife enjoy your delicious quiches for years to come, and perhaps one day say, “Hey, real men really do eat quiche!” 😉

  4. Love quiche!
    My first roommate taught me an odd one I’ve made for over 30 years.
    Cashews on the bottom of the crust,
    Then sauteed zucchini in butter.
    Eggs, monterey jack cheese cubes.
    Delish!

  5. I make quiche lorraine once a month. It is on my master monthly menu. Truly one of my favourite dishes. Your recipe is a bit different than mine, so I’m going to give it a try!!! I hope you are coping all right with the isolation. I imagine the canine company helps a lot.

    • Hi Erin, Buddy is keeping me sane and now that the hens are laying again, I get to chat with friends picking up eggs from afar, so that helps. What recipe do you use for your quiche?

  6. Tom, I actually made this when you shared the recipe on FB a few weeks ago. So good! Alas my leftover pie dough I pulled from the freezer was a sour cream version (actually VERY good) but not good for any kind of par bake. My sides did not hold and it shrunk so much before adding the filling it looked like it would be a flop. But it was still delicious featuring carmelized green onions from our garden. Will make again! I need a deeper pie dish too…

    • Lauren, that sounds really good. Sorry about the shrinkage, that’s no fun. Pie dough can be temperamental at times, that’s for sure. Sometimes, resting the dough in the fridge helps after rolling out the dough and placing in the pan. As they say on every cooking show, “it helps the glutens relax.” 😉 I’ll look around and see if I have a deep dish pie plate for you. Take care! Happy Baking!

  7. The muffin tin idea is intriguing. Does your Mom bake them before she freezes them? How long do they need to bake? Reheat in microwave or oven? Steve is limiting his carbs, so skipping the pastry is a good idea. I thought the custard was giggling at you because you were impatient to dig in:-)

    • Hi Karen, My mom just told me she now makes and bakes a frittata in a deep-dish pie plate and then cools and slices up portions to freeze. She reheats in the microwave until center is warm, say at 30 second intervals so as not to cook it and make it tough. If I were to make quiche in a muffin tin, I’d line each muffin “hole” with parchment paper. Just cut squares, crumple each one, open back up, press into individual muffin cavities, and fill each with quiche custard about 3/4 the way up the side. Bake until the edges are firm and lightly brown, then cool, and freeze in a freezer bag of individual servings. I’d thaw each in the fridge overnight and then microwave in the morning. Hope this helps. I’ll try it and let you know. Warm regards!

  8. Tom and Buddy,
    Have a wonderful time exploring many of the past behaviors that have been have been put on hold. ( I keep hearing about all the take out foods that people are eating.)

    I still believe in the special love and energy that goes into the end products that we produce
    The love of a one ones touch and the memories that are created and treasured that is now being thrown away. ( I still remember our family meals that we treasured ie watching, waiting, the slow scents of the meal being prepared, the conversations, the arguing etc.
    What heartfelt joy that can never be taken away!!)

    Enjoy, treasure, love and grow your hope,

    The Furry Gang and Viv (xoxo to all)

    • Viv I couldn’t agree more. Some of my fondest memories of family and friends took place around a dinner table, or on a picnic cloth, or under a beach umbrella. Although, there are a few exceptions sprinkled in, like: KFC chicken and all the fixings on our way to my grandparents’ lake cottage, or the local burger joint in South Carolina where I was introduced to the all-holy, crinkle-cut fry; or the sheer joy of eating drive-in frozen custard with hand-mixed flavors on a hot summer night. Always so nice to hear from you and the furry gang, and I so appreciate your lovely comments and well-wishes.

  9. Good morning Tom – thanks (really!) for adding this to my to-do-list. 🙂 When you posted this on Facebook, you had substituted some local cheeses (Cougar Gold, for one). Was that in place of the Swiss? Also – you had shared a recommended recipe for the pastry crust – could you post that here? Perhaps update the blog post with a link?

    • Great suggestion, John, I will do that, update the post with a link to the dough recipe I use. As for cheese, I tend to add combos of cheeses on-hand. My favorite is 1 cup of swiss or jarlsberg cheese with 1/4 to 1/2 Cup of grated hard cheese, like pecorino, asiago, parmesan, or romano.

  10. Buddy,

    I really like Tom’s recipe – very similar to mine. Only significant difference is I use double the bacon.

    Hope winter is treating both of you well.

    Tad

  11. Guess what’s for dinner, my son bought special Jones bacon for a treat. smells delicious. Waiting for the cooling period to end.
    As usual your recipe turn out very good. Thank you for sharing. Tried to send a picture but could not get it to post.
    Hope your doing well, Buddy also. He looks like he’s the boss of the house. Take care, Betty Dickerson

  12. Thanks Betty, ummmmm good bacon! 😉 That does sound like a real treat. A friend recently parted with a quarter pound of his homemade bacon. Sing sweet Alleluia, it was good, no make that great. I think I may try to make it. And if I do and there’s a worthy outcome, I’ll let you know about it, maybe in a post. Now adding that to my list of topics. Thanks for the kind words and well wishes, I’ll pass them along to the boss, too! Cheers, Tom

  13. Oh, man: we LOVE quiche in our household. In fact, it is our go to dish for family breakfasts – no casseroles for us! (Not that there’s anything wrong with a casserole!) Now that we are reducing our carb intake we usually make them with no crust (I miss it a little, but that’s ok) and they are just as good! Try smoked salmon quiche (that always disappears first at our family breakfasts.) or sub the Swiss with smoked Gruyere in an asparagus or broccoli quiche.

  14. Um um um Kim, I love those combos, and living in the salmon capital of the lower 48, I’ll be experimenting with my favorite fish in quiche, thank you. And Gruyere is really unmatched as a culinary melty cheese. I mean if it’s good enough for French Onion soup it’s good enough for me. Thanks for checking in, and here’s to many more quiches in your future.

  15. Wow Tom you must have been a professional food photographer in your former (pre-Vashon) life. Your quiches look amazing. I guess that’s one thing this *&%# virus is good for: cooking up a storm. I bet Buddy likes your quiche too. (Hi Buddy!) Keep up the good work, Tom, posting such interesting and delicious goings-on from The Rock.

    • Thank you Linda, what nice compliments. Most appreciated. I do enjoy photography from the edible to the scenic. And Buddy does love quiche especially if flavored with strong cheese and salty bacon. 😉

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