Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Quiche - not just for breakfast

I think I have mentioned before that I love breakfast stuff for dinner and this weekend my baking neighbor John made pie crusts and gave me one so I decided to make a quiche. They also freeze really well, but we've just been eating the leftovers for breakfast!

Basic Quiche serves 6

1 pie crust - if you are not lucky enough to have John live nearby I recommend just buying those folding crusts that they have at most stores - trader joes makes a pretty good one.
5 eggs
1 and 1/2 cups half & half
1/2 cup sour cream
1 tablespoon chopped fresh chives (they look cute, but you could skip this)
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 and 1/2 cups grated swiss cheese (I used emmentaler yesterday but gruyere is great too or a mix)

I suggest par-baking the crust in a 375 degree oven - just press the dough into the pie pan and try to make a pretty edge - mine wasn't so great! Then put a piece of foil pressed into the dough, covering the edges and pour in pie weights if you have them (I have a bag of rice and old beans that I use) and bake for about 25 min. Decrease oven to 350 degrees. Mix together all except the cheese. While the crust is still hot - no need to cool - sprinkle the cheese around the bottom - at this point you can add any of your additional ingredients, see ideas below. Then pour over the egg mixture. If you have left over (which you can see I did) just pour it into a small other baker and cook for a little less time - don't worry about not having a crust, it's still good. Bake for about 45 min or until it doesn't wiggle in the center too much and puffs up. It is really better to eat after it has cooled it just seems to hold it's shape so I recommend waiting an hour.

Other suggestions:
1. Bake them in individual mini muffin tins or regular muffin tins without the dough, just reduce the cooking time; great way to serve for a buffet.
2. Add chopped smoked ham - this is what I did on this one.
3. Traditional Quiche Lorraine - cook about 5 slices of bacon until crisp and in the drippings cook a chopped onion until soft. Spread onions and bacon on bottom of crust and then top with cheese, then the egg mixture.
4. Add raw asparagus that has been sliced into about 1 inch pieces and a diced red pepper. Great color!

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