Monday, 19 August 2013

A Quiche for Julia

On August 15th this year, Julia Child would have turned 101 years old! So obviously we celebrate! With quiche!

Last year I wanted to acknowledge Julia's 100th birthday when I found out about it, so I cooked her recipe for a savory cheese souffle. And you know what? It turned out awesome! I felt so fancy cooking up something from her very own cookbook. So... I have decided to make it a bit of a yearly tradition. On her birthday, August 15th, I will cook something by Julia, for Julia!

This year: quiche.

I am such a quiche fan! It feels classy somehow, even though it is just any ingredients mixed in eggs in pastry. But pair it with a garden salad and BAM! You have a classy lunch, or light dinner.

The other awesome thing about quiche is that you can really put in whatever ingredients you like, or whatever you have in your fridge. In this scenario, I did caramelized onions and mushrooms. Oh yes and cheese. Because, cheese.

Happy Birthday to Julia! 
And as she would always say, Bon Appetit!

Mushroom and Onion Quiche
Recipe slightly adapted from Julia Child

So I must confess, my quiche did not turn out quite how I was hoping it would. It was delicious don't even worry! However I did not bake the crust long enough (and made a mistake with the oven temperature...oops) so while the sides of the crust were buttery and flaky like a dream, the base of the crust was quite undercooked. 

I will give Julia's instructions here, and hopefully it will work better for you than it did for me. I know Julia would have not given up (!) so I shall definitely try again and get the temperature right this time and hopefully perfect the art of quiche-making. I will tell you though, that if you think "maybe it should be a little more baked before I add the filling" then yes, listen to your heart. I didn't. And ended up with unbaked pastry. Nobody wants that.

  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp sugar
  • 8 ounces cold butter cut into cubes
  • 1/2 cup ice water (plus a bit extra as needed)
Whisk together the flour, salt and sugar in a large bowl. Add the cold cubes of butter and using your sparkling clean hands, blend the butter into the flour with your fingers, breaking it up into pieces. Keep working the butter into the flour until the chunks are pea-sized. Drizzle in the cold water and using a cupped hand, quickly bring the mixture together to form a ball of dough. You will probably need a tablespoon more water to get all the flour to come together. 

On a lightly floured board, form the pastry into a ball and use the heel of your hand (not your palm because it will be too warm and will melt the butter) just smear the pastry against the board a few inches away from you. This helps to bring the pastry together completely. Flatten pastry into a round disk, wrap in plastic and chill in the fridge for 2 hours or overnight. The pastry will also keep for weeks in the freezer.

After the pastry has had time to chill, we can roll it out! Using a rolling pin, start in the center of the disk and just use small motions at first, turning the pastry after each roll to keep the circle even. Continue rolling out the pastry until it is 1/8" thick.

Grease an 8" tart pan with removable bottom with butter. Transfer the pastry into the pan. This is done easily by rolling the pastry round onto your rolling pin, then unrolling it over top of the tart pan. Press the pastry into the corners and up the side of the pan. Use your rolling pin to trim the excess pastry and isn't it looking gorgey already?!

But hold on, we gotta pre-bake this baby first. Like definitely.

Prick the bottom of the pastry all over with a fork. Place a piece of parchment on the top and fill the empty tart with dried beans or pie weights. If you are not baking the shell right away, keep it in the fridge! Bake the shell in a 400 degree oven until set, 7-10 minutes. (I will do more next time!)

Remove the parchment with the beans or weights and place the tart shell back in the oven to brown for 3 minutes or so.

Let the shell cool completely before adding your filling. You can unmold the tart from its pan now, or wait until your quiche is completely finished. I chose the latter option, just to be safe.

  • 1 tbsp cream
  • 1 cup minus 1 tbsp milk (I used skim because that's what I had)
  • 3 eggs
  • salt and pepper
  • pinch nutmeg
  • 1-2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 onion sliced
  • 1/2-1 tbsp butter
  • about 8 mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • Optional: 1 slice Swiss cheese, torn into pieces
First, start by caramelizing the onions. I could eat anything with caramelized onions. Maybe even ice cream.

Heat a wide pot over medium low heat with the olive oil. Onve the pan is hot, add the onion slices and cook over a low to medium low heat, stirring occasionally, for a looooong time. How long? Maybe even up to an hour. Woah! Because good things take time my friends. Low and slow is the game. When the onions are soft and golden and caramelized like magic, you may remove them from the pot into a bowl and set them aside.

In the same pot, toss in a dab of butter along with the sliced mushrooms and garlic. Take a moment to appreciate the way your house now smells. Saute the mushrooms until they have lost their liquid and are cooked through. I added my onions back into the pot about halfway through... because I wanted them to make friends. Once everything is cooked to your liking, turn off the heat and set this mixture aside.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk and cream and seasonings. This mixture can be kept in the fridge for a few hours if not used right away. Also, to this mixture you can add your own ingredients if your not feeling the onion and mushrooms. You could add cheese, sauteed veggies, cooked meats like BACON. I like where you're going with this...

When you are ready to bake your quiche, call your aunt and invite her over for a nice lunch. Then, preheat your oven to 375.
Spoon some of the onion and mushroom mixture over the bottom of the tart crust. Pour in the egg filling to just below the top of the tart and sprinkle the cheese pieces over the top.

*Note: I only used about half of my filling mixture in my quiche. The rest I baked up in a buttered baking dish to make a second crust-less quiche.

Bake for 20-25 minutes until the quiche has puffed up and turned golden brown. Julia says that once it has cooked, it should not wiggle in the center.

Remove from the oven and let cool for about 10 minutes before serving.

Serve alongside a garden salad avec a light vinaigrette and be proud that you just made quiche. Even if your pastry isn't fully cooked. You're still awesome. And so is Julia!

Bon Appetit!

<3 Lari

1 comment:

  1. Ahhh! I love it!
    I haven't read your blog in so long I missed it! :) and I love Julia Child!!