I often remember my love of quiche during the hot summer evenings, when I want to feel that satisfaction that only hearty savoury food can provide, but just can’t face eating anything hot.
For all the wonderful variety of quiches that now exist, the classic quiche lorraine will always be king. Or queen, rather.
The pastry is a pâte brisée, and the recipe is here; I always make my pastry in batches and store it in the freezer until I need it.
- 300 g pâte brisée
- 150 g ham (or cooked lardons)
- 100 g cheddar cheese, grated
- 3 large eggs
- 150 ml milk
- 150 ml double cream
- pinch ground nutmeg
- good grind salt and pepper
- sprinkle chives, finely chopped
- On a piece of baking parchment, roll out the pastry into a circle, slightly larger than the (23cm/9-inch) tart tin, and about 3mm thick.
- Lift up the baking parchment and invert over the tart tin. Peel back the baking parchment.
- Carefully lift up the edges, and ease the pastry down into the tin.Push and press the pastry into every crease of the tin, leaving a small lip over the side of the tin.
- Patch areas where required, trying to keep the pastry the same thickness. Move the tart tin to the fridge for 20 minutes, or to the freezer for 5 minutes.
- Preheat the oven to 180c/160c fan
- Use a paring knife to trim the pastry, flush against the top of the tart tin.
- Prick the base of the pastry case with a fork, and then line the tart with ovenproof clingfilm or baking parchment, and fill with uncooked rice.
- Bake the pastry case for 20 minutes, then lift out the rice parcel. Bake for another 10-12 minutes, until the pastry is completely cooked.
- Leave the pastry case to cool completely and dry out.
- Increase the temperature of the oven to 200c/180c fan
- Distribute the ham around the bottom of the pastry case.Sprinkle the grated cheese over the top, as evenly as possible.
- Crack the eggs into a large jug, and whisk lightly to break up the yolks.Add the milk and cream, along with the nutmeg, salt, and pepper. Whisk briefly to incorporate.
- Pour the egg mixture into the pastry case, then sprinkle over some finely chopped chives.
- Transfer the quiche into the centre of the oven, and bake for about 30 minutes, until the middle is just set, and pleasingly browned.
- Leave to cool for at least 20 minutes before serving.