I was 28 when I moved to Raleigh, NC from a suburb of St. Louis, MO. I had been married for just a couple of years when my husband was offered a management job with a telecommunications company and I was excited about the move. It was going to be hard to leave my young sister and niece that I adored but it was an adventure that I was ready for. I had spent all of my life in one place and though Raleigh may not seem all that adventurous to many…the distance from home qualified it for me! The language barrier was my only issue but I learned to ‘Hey’ and ‘Y’all’ with the best of them in my ten years there.
As it turned out, our next door neighbors were also from St. Louis…talk about a coincidence. They were a few years older and had a wonderful little girl; we had a wonderful dog and between the six of us, we bonded quickly and spent a lot of time together. Jane and I both loved to cook as did Alma Snyder, a retired woman who lived in the same complex with her husband. Alma became much like a mother to me; sometimes more so as we had great fun cooking together. Alma and her husband were German immigrants and so much of what we did together seemed an extension of the wonderful times I had spent cooking with my adored Grandmother Bathe.
I will never forget the weekend we decided to do a potluck between our families because it was at that meal when I was introduced to Quiche Lorraine. At that point in my life; although a decent cook and something I already loved to do, my experience was limited most often to the dishes I had helped make growing up; casseroles, meatloaf, fried chicken…those Midwestern staples.
Don’t laugh but I really thought Quiche Lorraine the epitome of sophistication. I had never once had anything in a pie crust that wasn’t sweet and of course, the French name sealed the deal for me. I had spent several years in high school learning French I never used…but now, now I was eating a real French dish. C’est tres bien!
Over the years, poor Quiche Lorraine has been abused and accused. Outdated, too simple…and we’ve all heard it right? ‘Real Men Don’t Eat Quiche!’ – You have to wonder why that phrase came to be. It’s not like it’s made of lavender and roses; it’s bacon, cheese, eggs and crust for crying out loud…with some cayenne and mustard thrown in for good measure! If real men don’t eat those then why would they ever touch many breakfast dishes? Plus I’ve got a secret about guys and quiche that I think it’s high time I professed…I’ve never once offered a slice of quiche to a man and heard him say, “No thanks…I’m a real man and I don’t eat quiche.” They’ve always gobbled it up so I think it’s time you came out of the closet guys and professed your love!
This is one of my two favorite, easy to fix and yet deeply gratifying meals, for both their simplicity and the end result (spaghetti carbonara is the other). While I will typically make my own crust, I also have no qualms about using prepared pie crusts (well, maybe a few…don’t mock me forever or call me Sandra Lee, please?). I always have a couple of the rolled up crusts in my freezer that you thaw and put into your own pie plate. They look and taste decent and sometimes, that ease factor makes them perfect for me so if you’re not into crust making; don’t let that stop you from making quiche.
I will mix up ingredients on a regular basis. Alma’s original Quiche Lorraine did not include caramelized onions and called for Swiss cheese where I’ve used a wonderful Aged Cheddar from my friends at Kerrygold USA; I’ve grown very fond of their products…an intervention might be necessary but I would much prefer a new, separate facility at my favorite Costco so that they can carry more and more of their cheeses (wonder if they have started to recognize my handwriting on those request cards yet, hmm?). This cheese was a gift from Kerrygold but they asked for nothing in return; they already know they have my undying love!
Might not be so totally French anymore but I assure you mesdames and messieurs; lads and lassies…you will love it!
Quiche Lorraine with Caramelized Onions IS for Real Men!
1 hr 15 mins
A wonderful blend of eggs, cream, bacon and caramelized onions in a pie crust.
- 1 prepared pastry shell, unbaked (make your own favorite or use an option from the grocery store)
- 1 1/2 cups grated cheese (I used aged white cheddar but Swiss is typical)
- 1 large onion, thinly sliced
- 8 slices crisp, cooked bacon, crumbled
- 3 eggs
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 1 cup milk
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1-2 dashes of Cayenne
- 1/2 tsp powdered mustard
- Preheat over to 375 degrees.
- Slice onion thinly and saute over medium heat for 20 minutes til soft and starting to turn brown.
- Spread onion mixture on bottom of prepared pastry shell.
- Sprinkle cheese and bacon on top of caramelized onions.
- Beat remaining ingredients together and pour over cheese.
- Bake until firm and brown approximately 45 minutes.