Cottage Chat – Rustic Italian Quiche

Rustic Italian Quiche with Tomato, Basil and Oregano

Quiche is a classic French dish, but it actually originated in medieval Germany, in the kingdom of Lothringen. When the French took over, they renamed the city Lorraine, thus came the Quiche Lorraine. The word ‘Quiche’ is from the German word ‘Kuchen’, meaning cake.

The original ‘Quiche Lorraine’ was an open pie with a filling of just egg, cream and bacon. Cheese was added later. The bottom crust was originally made from bread dough, but that evolved into short-crust or puff pastry crust. And that has since evolved into store-bought crust!

The French are masters of the quiche and long-ago invented the perfect formula of one part egg to two parts milk. A standard large egg weighs two ounces and a cup of milk is eight ounces, so good to remember, two eggs per cup of milk. I like to jack this up a bit to make a more hearty quiche and use three eggs to a cup of milk, and add cream, in a nine-inch quiche/tart pan. You can use a pie pan but it won’t be as deep as a quiche pan, you can get one at Target, it has removable bottom with high edges, perfect for eggy, creamy delights!

Regarding the cheese… I think two cups of mixed cheeses makes a nice, rich quiche. Use whatever cheese floats your boat, just be careful with wet cheeses like Mozzarella…too much water spoils the custard, so to speak. I used provolone, pepper jack and Mexican queso, or crumbling cheese.

When thinking of fillings, two cups will suffice. They can be sautéed, cooked or raw. Just be sure to drain them well. For instance, if you are going to use sautéed spinach, you would want to drain the juices. The list is very long as to what can be added, so use your favorites and don’t be afraid to try weird combos like fruit/veggie, veggie/seafood, meat/fruit, seafood/fruit, etc.  I used fresh baby tomatoes, basil and oregano, from my own garden!!

And the same goes for spices, whatever floats your boat. Be careful to go easy, as they can overpower the eggs. Give it a try, get creative!

Enjoy and c’est la vie and Viva Italia!

Rustic Italian Quiche with Tomato, Basil and Oregano

Makes one 9-inch quiche

Ingredients

1 9-inch pie crust in pie pan or tart pan
3 large eggs
1 cup milk
1 cup cream
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
2 cups of baby tomatoes
2 cups grated cheese, like Swiss, Jack, or Provolone or any combo of cheeses
Basil and oregano

Instructions

Heat the oven to 350°.

Lightly spray then line a 9-inch tart pan with your crust. Place wax or parchment paper over the crust and fill it with beans or pie weights, this keeps the crust from slipping/puffing.

Freeze the crust for 30 minutes then bake for 20 minutes.

While the crust is baking, whisk your custard filling of egg, milk, cream and spices.

Sprinkle half the cheese over the bottom of the pie crust and top with tomatoes and herbs.

Sprinkle the remaining cheese on top.

Pour the custard into the pie crust.

Bake the quiche at 350°F for 35 to 40 minutes, until the edges are set but the quiche still jiggles a little in the center. Cool for at least 20 minutes. Longer is better, or best is overnight.

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