Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Quiche Lorraine - Inspired by "Les Deux Magots"; Paris, France

***One of our very favorite meals in Paris was at the legendary "Les Deux Magots" cafe. Authors such as Ernest Hemingway used to frequent the restaurant. You can visit the website HERE.

From the site:
"The café started life in 1813 as a drapery, selling silk and other luxury items. It took its name 'Les Deux Magots' from a successful play of that time: 'The Two Magots (aka wisemen) of China'.
-And no...it's not pronounced "maggots"...I know what you're thinking...haha. The "t" is silent!)

In the tense pre-war atmosphere, Saint Germain des Pres became the intellectual centre of Paris : Gide, Guehenno, Malraux and Chamson regularly ended up in discussions on the café terrace. Paul Eluard introduced Dora Maar to Picasso at "Les Deux Magots".

Every morning, Jean Paul Sartre with Simone de Beauvoir would take his seat at "Les Deux Magots" and write for hours, often without pause, but sometimes stopping to talk to Ernest Hemingway, another regular customer."
Brad and I both ordered the Quiche Lorraine...it was fabulous and had a wonderful taste and texture. The salad of lettuce and tomatoes with a drizzling of balsamic vinegar really brought the entire meal together. I told Brad and I HAD to try and re-create it once we got home. And that I did!
I can't tell you how much I LOVE Prosciutto di Parma lately...I was thrilled when I found a leg of prosciutto imported from Italy at a local grocer. I promptly ordered half a pound and started thinking of how I wanted to use it. This quiche was the perfect recipe for it!

I have to send a special "THANKS!" to my friend Geraldine, who helped me tremendously with this quiche. Her tips helped me to ensure my quiche would be authentically French! Merci beaucoup, Geraldine!

This dish is so scrumptious. It would make a perfect brunch or dinner...it's so versatile. I served it with a side salad. The gruyere cheese is simply divine!

Bon Appetit!***

4 generous servings

For the pastry:
1 cup flour
1/2 t salt
1/3 cup very cold butter, cut into 6 pieces
4 tbsp. ice water

Put the flour, salt and butter into the work bowl of a food processor fitted with the metal blade. Pulse 6-7 times. Slowly pour the water through the feed tube and continue to pulse, just until the dough starts to hold together. Flatten into a disc and refrigerate for an hour (or freezer for 10 minutes) Roll out the usual way and and fit into a 9” pie or tart dish that is at least 1 1/2 “ deep. Chill crust while making filling.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. After the shell has chilled for at least a half hour, prick the bottom and sides with a fork and pre-bake in the pre-heated oven for 7- 8 minutes until it’s just starting to take on some golden color. Remove.

For the filling:
4 large eggs
6 slices thick sliced bacon cooked & torn into bite size pieces (I used Prosciutto di Parma)
4 oz gruyere cheese, shredded
1 1/2 cups half and half
1/4 cup small diced onion, sauteed in butter until limp
Salt & pepper
1/ 4 tsp. grated nutmeg
fresh herbs (optional)

Sprinkle the bottom of the pre-baked crust with the cheese. Next, layer on the bacon and onion.
In a large bowl, beat the eggs very well- until light and frothy. Add the half and half and seasonings and herbs .Whisk vigorously.

Carefully pour into pie shell. Bake in the upper third of a 375 degree oven until brown and firm, about 35-45 minutes . It might puff up some but will fall when cooling.

Cool for at least 30 minutes before cutting and serving.


Audax Artifex said...

Just love this simple and easy recipe. It's a fav with me. Thanks for the comments on my blog. Yours Audax

Joelen said...

What a delicious looking recipe!

Fahrenheit 350° said...

I love me some quiche!

Géraldine said...

Your welcome Celeste! Your quiche seem very delecious!! you can make quiche also with all food you have in your fridge.(vegetables,different cheese,chiken...).

Erina said...

I love the idea of using Gruyere! I recently made one with goat cheese and a dash of dill that was also very yummy.


Great pictures too by the way!!