I wanted to share this recipe for Quiche Florentine with homemade crust that I made recently. I like quiche but don’t make it very often. It definitely is not an every day food, but it’s comforting and delicious, and worth the calories once in a while.
If you decide to make it, I encourage you to make the crust. The quality of the crust is important here, and I am convinced that a store-bought crust takes away from the end result. To be honest, I almost never use a store-bought crust. When I hear that one can’t tell the difference, I think they most likely haven’t had a chance to try homemade and don’t have a frame of reference. Or prefer the store-bought kind out of convenience. What you gain in convenience, you definitely sacrifice in taste. I find it’s also true with biscuits.
Here is my go-to pie crust, a Julia Child recipe. I use it for savory and sweet pies and it always comes out well. It can be mixed in a food processor but I mix it by hand. I feel like I have a better control of the consistency that way. And also I hate washing the food processor.
To make the crust:
Makes two single or one double crust pies
1 1/3 c flour
1 1/4 stick (10 tbsp) butter straight from fridge, cut into small pieces
2 tbsp shortening (or additional butter)
1 tsp salt
1/3 cup ice cold water
Combine flour, salt, butter, and shortening. I start with a sturdy fork and then move onto squishing the butter pieces between my fingers to rub them into the flour until the mixture looks like course cornmeal with some pea-sized pieces throughout.
Add about 1/4 cup of the water and mix with a fork. If the dough looks really dry and crumbly add a bit more water and stir again. It may look like you need more water but usually you don’t. Just keep stirring until the dough turns into a loose ball. Divide into two, cover it with plastic wrap and let it cool in the fridge for at least 30 minutes. It freezes great as well.
To make the quiche:
1 pie crust (if you are not up to making your own, use frozen. Here is the original recipe for the quiche, using a frozen crust).
Butter or oil for the pan, 1/2 tbsp or so
1/2 chopped onion
4 large eggs
1 1/4 cup heavy cream
a pinch of ground nutmeg
3/4 tsp salt
1 cup of shredded Gruyère cheese (can use Swiss)
1 package of frozen spinach (10 oz), defrosted and squeezed dry*
Preheat the oven to 400 F.
Roll out the crust on a floured surface and transfer into a pie plate. For this particular recipe, I used the whole recipe for the crust, without dividing in two, and made really tall sides. Prick the bottom with a fork allover.
Pre-bake the crust for 10 -15 minutes until light brown. The crust will shrink somewhat, hence the tall sides** (see a note below). It will also puff up, which is not a big deal. Push it gently down.
Turn the oven temperature down to 325 F.
While the crust is baking, cook the onion over medium heat for 5-7 minutes, don’t let it brown.
Beat the eggs with the cream, salt, and nutmeg.
Sprinkle the cooked onion followed by the cheese at the bottom of the crust, add a layer of spinach, and pour the eggs and cream mixture over the top.
Bake for 45-55 minutes (depending on your oven). Let cool until warm. Hot quiche is a pain to cut and to eat.
*Make sure the spinach is completely dry or it will make the quiche soggy.
** The crust shrinks during pre-baking, regardless of the method (I tried pie weights, draping it over the pie plate upside down, etc.). I saw a tip to freeze it first and bake from frozen. I m going to try that next time.