The Quiche of All Quiches

Thursday, May 10, 2012


I apologize that this recipe is tad late on sharing. (I made this for Easter brunch.) But, better late than never, right?

This quiche is the quiche of all quiches – nothing dainty going on here. The recipe for this quiche is adapted from the Tartine Bakery, my absolute favorite breakfast spot in San Francisco. The major changes I made to this recipe involve subtracting a cup of crème fresh (because I wanted my quiche to be a little more eggy and a little less custardy), adding my own flavor preferences of asparagus and Gruyere cheese (however you could add an infinite amount of ingredients), and a major adjustment on the cooking time. The recipe I found online, at marthastewart.com, courtesy of Elisabeth Prueitt, one of the owners at the Tartine Bakery, instructed to bake the tart for a total of 45 minutes. Even with a properly working oven, 45 minutes seems rather shy to slowly bake this much custard. I would guess at least 1 hour to 1 and half hours for most ovens. My quiche took close to 2 hours, and I baked it with foil on top for the last 45 minutes, until the eggs just slightly jiggled in the center when shook. The eggs were just perfectly set and the custard was rich, creamy and delicate. I would recommend making this quiche to anyone who was planning a wedding or baby shower or other sort of brunch.










Quiche

Serves 8

Dough
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup cold water
1 1/2 cups plus 1 tablespoon flour, plus more for the work surface
10 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into 1 inch cubes

Filling
1/2 cup flour
10 eggs, at room temperature
1 cup crème fresh, at room temperature
2 cups whole milk, at room temperature
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
1/3 cup finely chopped leek
1 bunch asparagus, all but 8 spears cut into 1 inch pieces
2 cups grated Gruyere cheese

To make the dough combine the salt and water. Keep in the fridge until ready to use. Place the flour and butter in a small food processor (or mix by hand) and pulse until large lumps form. Add the salt water, a small amount at a time, while continuing to pulse, until the dough is just starting to form together. Dump the dough out on a cool, floured work surface. Make sure the dough is completely combined, but do not unnecessarily work the dough. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours and up to overnight.

To roll out the dough, lightly flour a cold work surface. Use a rolling pin to roll the dough out about 1/4 inch thick. Start rolling from the center working your way outward, constantly moving the dough around the work surface, making sure that it doesn’t stick, using more flour as needed. To transfer the dough to a springform pan, lightly roll the dough around the rolling pin; then unroll the dough out, over the pan. Working quickly, press the dough evenly into the pan with the crust folding over the edges. Cut the excess dough off the sides of the pan but leave enough dough to press the dough just over the edges. Refrigerate until the dough is chilled and firm, about 30 minutes. Place a sheet of parchment paper on the bottom of the pie shell and fill with pie weights or beans and bunch the excess sides of the parchment over the beans/weights to create a pouch that can easily be removed half way through baking. Return the shell with the weights to the refrigerator and chill for 1 hour or up to overnight. (I like to roll out the shell the night before so that it is perfectly chilled and ready to go in the morning.)

When ready to bake the crust, preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Bake the shell with the parchment and weights for 20 minutes. Then remove the weights and bake for 10 minutes more. Allow the shell to cool completely (or almost completely) on a wire rack. Meanwhile, make the filling. In a large bowl with a whisk attachment or using a hand mixer, combine 1 egg and the 1/2 cup of flour on high speed until well combined. Add the remaining 9 eggs and mix until well combined. Place the crème fresh and milk in a separate bowl and whisk together until smooth. Add the crème fresh mixture to the egg mixture along with the salt and pepper. Whisk with the attachment on low speed until all the ingredients are thoroughly incorporated.

Place the cooled crust (still in its springform pan) on a large baking sheet. Sprinkle the finely chopped leek, half of the cheese, and all of the chopped asparagus into the bottom of the crust. Pour the egg mixture over the ingredients into the crust. Top with the remaining cheese. Arrange the whole asparagus on top of the quiche and lightly press into the filling so that the asparagus are lightly coated in the batter. Bake for 10 minutes; then reduce the heat to 325 degrees F and bake for about 1 hour and 20 minutes, or until the eggs are just set. To test the quiche, use oven mitts to gently shake the pan. The eggs should giggle and be puffed, but not seem runny or raw in the center. Check the quiche after 1 hour and cover with a piece of foil if the cheese is getting rather brown. Bake the eggs until set, rather than focus on the time on the clock. Once the eggs are set, remove the baking pan and quiche from the oven. Allow the eggs to set and cool for 20 minutes. Then use a sharp serrated knife to cut the edges of the crust from the pan so that when you release the sides of the springform pan the crust will no longer be attached at the top and break the crust. Use a sharp knife and pie shape spatula to serve.

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