Sunday brunch: Quiches

I once went out to lunch with my father at our former regular haunt, Jake Hafner’s Tavern and Restaurant. We sat at the bar and ate, as usual. I ordered the quiche. The bartender, an otherwise lovely woman, looked at me and said, “No. Men don’t order quiche. You’ll have a burger.”

I tell this story for no particular reason, other than to illustrate that I like quiche. I think that it gets a bad rap for being French. I mena, if it were called egg pie or, say, pizza, no one would think otherwise. But, it’s quiche. It even sounds kind of girly. The problem is that it has potential to be a pretty manly meal. It has all the cholesterol and saturated fat a man could want PLUS pie crust.

Mother’s Day this year was a more abbreviated affair. The Wife and I had The In-Laws over. I’m slightly limited when cooking for them, mostly because my father-in-law is, shall we say, a picky eater (FACT: He won’t eat meat with lots of exposed fat, but on Thanksgiving he eats the turkey skin.). The Wife suggested egg casseroles. Meh. Casseroles are so…listen, I’m not a 1970s housewife. The word “casserole” makes me twitch. But, for every simple option there is an upgrade. Egg casserole? Blah. Quiche? Win.

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One was not going to be enough. Frankly, if you’re going to make quiche, you might as well make more than one. I had to buy a dozen eggs and pie crusts come in packages of two anyways. And, yes, I used store-bought crust. The sacrilegious suggestion of store-bought crust goes on the shelf next to my resistance to make my own pasta. Frankly, I don’t have time, plus flour gets everywhere and is impossible to clean up. It’s like a trip to the beach, when you find sand in places you didn’t think it could get.

Broccoli and garlic quiche
By Jared Paventi

  • One 9-inch pie crust, prepared per the package’s instructions
  • 10 ounces broccoli florets, steamed
  • 2 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 6 large eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups half-and-half
  • 1/4 tsp. grated nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp. cayenne (I used the Dinosaur Barbque Cajun Foreplay)
  • 6 oz. fontina cheese, cubed
  • sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In a mixing bowl with a small spoon, combine garlic with salt to emulsify and form a paste. Add eggs, half-and-half, nutmeg and cayenne and whisk until smooth. Add broccoli to the pie shell, then pour egg mixture over the top taking care not to overfill. Top with fontina and fresh ground pepper. Bake 30-45 minutes or until the filling is solid but jiggly. Don’t let it crack or get too dry. Cool 20 minutes before serving. Note: This can be made a day before. Reheat in a 325-degree oven for 20 minutes before serving.

Ham and cheddar quiche
By Jared Paventi

  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 cup half-and-half
  • 6-7 oz. cooked ham, cubed
  • 5-6 oz. sharp cheddar cheese, cubed
  • kosher salt
  • freshly ground black pepper

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In a mixing bowl, whisk together eggs, half-and-half, a punch of salt and black pepper. Spread ham evenly along the bottom of the pie shell, then top with egg mixture. Top with cheddar cheese. Bake 30-45 minutes or until the filling is solid but jiggly. Don’t let it crack or get too dry. Cool 20 minutes before serving. Note: This can be made a day before. Reheat in a 325-degree oven for 20 minutes before serving.

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