So, as promised this is the birthday quiche of one friend, Hipster Girl. I like quiche, it’s like a warm blanket on a rainy fall night, comforting and safe. I grew up on my mom’s quiche which was ham, cheddar cheese and frozen peas, I loved the quiche. I loved the way it smelled while it cooked in the oven – salty and eggy it was such a hearty scent and it instantly brings me back to my childhood in a big rambling farmhouse in Maine.
Making quiche makes me think of the first time I attempted it every time. I was 7 or 8 and my elder sister wanted to make dinner, so I offered to help (already knowing then that she was not the best when left to her own devices in the kitchen), we sized up the fridge and decided to make quiche – it seemed simple and I remembered how to make it, right? Pie crust in pan and the layers of ham, cheese, and peas later we were ready to make the egg filling – eggs, milk, Morton’s (it’s a mixed seasoning that I apparently am no longer able to find ;_;) whisk and pour. In thought we had it right – we had followed the recipe – but when we looked in the oven 25 minutes later, disaster. There was egg everywhere and still more dripping from the pan. Mom was supposed to be home in 10 minutes and this quiche was no where near done… We panicked. My elder sister freaking because of the mess in the stove (Mom didn’t care much about the mess, after all we had tried to make dinner) and me trying to figure out how to Fix-the-Quiche. I was still trying to solve this problem in my child head when Mom came in, cold from the fall weather and delighting in the smell. She looked at Meg and I standing meekly in the kitchen and laughter bubbled up from her as we told her of the failure. She pulled the barely cooked quiche from the stove put a pizza pan underneath it and said to leave it alone for a while – it would be fine, a little more custard than quiche, but fine. As the eggy quiche smell filled the house I realized how very true this was.
This quiche is no more complex than the one I made when I was eight except the ingredients were fresher and more artisanal, french triple cream brie and Italian salami. But it was divine in that makes me think of home and comforting smells, like blueberry jam cooking on the stove and peanut butter at Christmas.
Quiche is such a familiar food I feel a little indulgent giving it a place here but for me that’s what this blog is about, comfort and familiarity. I keep this blog so my readers can experience me in the whirlwind that is my kitchen, be it with an overly extravagant cake or a familiar quiche. This is also a great go-to food for weekdays – the whole thing can be put together in 10 minutes and baked for 45 the most work is in the letting it sit when it comes out of the oven covered in browned and bubbling cheese.
Kathy’s Salami, Brie and Cherry Quiche
Based loosely on “Quiche a la Mom” which is on a battered index card printed in my childhood handwriting.
Note: I use a purchased pie crust for this because I’m kind of lazy and find pie crust to be something I don’t care to make a lot (of course I make it for Thanksgiving pies and when I’ve forgotten to purchase it). But I will give you my recipe for it, because it is easy.
1 Cup Flour
1/3 Cup cold Butter
1/2 tsp salt
1-2 grinds of fresh pepper
2-6 Tbs of ice water
Cut the flour, salt, and pepper into the butter until the butter is the size of small peas an it seems scattered throughout, this can be done using a pastry blender, two knives of with 5-7 pulses of a food processor. Add water 1 Tbs at a time mixing gently with a fork until the whole thing just comes together (I use about 3 Tbs). Bring the whole thing into a ball and roll it out on a well floured counter until it fits your pie plate. Makes one 9″ pie crust. And remember the 3 rules of pastry: Keep it cold, Roll Once, Patch sparingly.
2/3 Cup Hard Salami, chopped into 1/4 inch cubes
2/3 cup Brie (use a milder one because it will melt and the flavor will grow), cut into small cubes of thin slices
1/4 cup good Cherry Preserves (I used Trappist and it was very nice)
1/2 cup grated Swiss cheese
1/2 cup milk
salt and pepper to taste
Line a pie pan with crust and flute the edges (I’m totally terrible at that part). Spread the cherry preserves in the bottom of the crust, being careful not to break it. Then sprinkle the salami around evenly, lay the brie slices on top of the salami evenly. Continue to layer the salami and brie through the crust until they are gone.
Whisk the eggs, milk and salt and pepper together until even and frothy, added the Swiss cheese. Pour this filling mixture over your layered salami and brie gently being careful to not jostle the cherry preserves at the bottom of the pan. Lay a couple of pieces of brie on top before putting it in the oven for presentation.