Quiche Lorraine is one of those dishes where it seems everyone has a different opinion about how the traditional version is prepared.
I’ve read bacon and Swiss, some with leeks, some not – but most of them have one thing in common: a custard made with an ungodly amount of cream and a little bit of egg. Most also seem to include bacon, as this recipe does – I think it’s safe to say that any recipe by Julia is probably pretty close to the traditional.
You’ll be amazed at how this quiche is so rich and light at the same time. I love that it almost bears the flavor of cheese, without actually having to add any. But even moreso, I’m in love with this crust. I’ve never used shortening before, and I think that may have been the key (though I know many of you are likely turned off by it). It was so unbelievably flaky, I had zero problems with it cooking unevenly, and it was super easy to roll out and work with.
I used a springform pan, so I ended up with sort of a funny shape, but next time I would probably use a regular pie dish. I added extra custard to try and fill it higher to the top, but it didn’t really work since my springform is so high, so I recommend using a pie plate and sticking with the recipe below.
Adapted from Mastering the Art of French Cooking via Saveur
- 2 cups flour
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- Pinch sugar
- 8 tablespoons cold butter, cut into small pieces
- 3 tablespoons cold vegetable shortening, cut into small pieces
- 1 egg, lightly beaten
- 6 ounces bacon, diced
- 3 eggs, lightly beaten
- 2 cups heavy cream
- 1/2 cup sour cream
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- Freshly grated nutmeg
- Freshly ground black pepper
For the crust: Sift together flour, salt, and sugar into a mixing bowl. Use a pastry cutter or two knives to work butter and shortening into flour until it resembles coarse meal. Sprinkle in up to 6 tbsp. ice water, stirring the dough with a fork until it just begins to hold together. Using your hands, press dough firmly into a rough ball, then transfer to a lightly floured surface. Give the dough several quick kneads with the heel of your hand to form a smooth dough, then shape into a ball, flatten slightly to make a round, and dust with flour. Wrap round in plastic and refrigerate for 2 hours.
Preheat oven to 400°. Allow dough to soften slightly at room temperature before rolling out on a lightly floured surface into a 14” round. Fit dough, without stretching it, into a buttered 10” bottomless metal flan ring, 1 1⁄2” deep, set on a parchment paper-lined cookie sheet with no rim (or a pie plate). Press overhanging dough down slightly into sides of ring to make the sides of the crust a little thicker and sturdier. Run the rolling pin over the top of the ring to remove any overhanging dough. Using a fork, prick bottom lightly, then make a decorative edge around the rim. Line dough with buttered aluminum foil, then add pie weights or dried beans. Bake until crust is set and edge just begins to color, about 25 minutes. Remove foil and weights, brush bottom and sides with egg, and continue baking until crust is pale golden, another 2-5 minutes.
For the filling: Reduce heat to 375°. Put bacon in a medium pan, cover with cold water, and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. (I found this to be a strange step, and though I couldn’t find out for sure why, I believe it has something to do with removing the excess salt from the bacon.) Boil for 5 minutes, then drain. Return bacon to pan and cook over medium heat until lightly browned, about 3 minutes. Transfer bacon with a slotted spoon to a paper towel to drain, then arrange on bottom of crust.
Beat eggs, cream, and salt together in a medium bowl and season to taste with nutmeg and pepper. Pour mixture into crust and bake until custard is puffed and golden and just set in the center, 30-35 minutes. Slide quiche off parchment paper (or remove from pie plate) onto a serving platter and remove ring. Serve quiche warm or at room temperature, sliced into wedges.