There are few dishes more satisfying than a quiche. I love the textural contrast between the crispy crust and silky custard. Without the shortcrust pastry, quiche would just be a boring custard.
For me, quiche is one of those dishes which are perfect to use up whatever you have leftover in the fridge. You can hardly go wrong with the filling. Vegetables, cheese, meat: everything goes.
I eat quiche year-round and always alter the ingredients depending on the season. In the springtime, I favor asparagus quiche. In summer, zucchini and eggplant quiche are what excites me. Fall is mushroom season and in winter I love the classic: Quiche Lorraine with bacon and cheese.
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Isn’t quiche a French dish?
You might insist that quiche is rater a French than a German dish. And I agree. It originated in Lothringen, which has been part of Germany in the past but now belongs to France.
However, its French name is said to be derived from the German words ‘Kichel’ and ‘Kuechel’ which mean nothing else than ‘cake’. And indeed, there’s a German dish that is very similar to the Quiche Lorraine: The Swabian onion cake (‘Zwiebelkuchen’).
There are quite a lot of dishes in Southern German cuisine which are neither fully French nor fully German. Some other dishes from the Alsace-Lothringen region that can be considered German-French fusion food are:
It’s inevitable that you use high-quality European-style butter to prepare the shortcrust pastry. Butter is what makes it delicious. It’s one of the easiest pastries to prepare. The only thing you need to remember is to work quickly.
The butter should be cold when you incorporate it and the egg needs to be kneaded into the dough only briefly. You want the crust to come out flaky, not doughy. Also, always give your dough time to rest before rolling it out.
For quiche, you need to blind bake the crust so that it won’t get soggy. I’m sure you’re already familiar with that procedure from baking pies. You put some weight onto your pie and prebake it in the hot oven for 10 minutes.
How to assemble your quiche
After that, it’s time to fill the pie shell. The asparagus needs to be parboiled because it won’t soften enough otherwise. I also recommend parboiling the wild garlic for a few seconds just to wilt it. That way it won’t take up as much space and you can add more.
For the custard, combine crème fraîche, whole milk, and eggs in a blender. I like to season the custard with nutmeg and a pinch of salt. I like to also aerate the custard just before pouring it into the quiche form. That way it will be super light and the quiche won’t come out too heavy.
Once baked, make sure to let your quiche rest for at least 10 minutes before slicing. It’s easier to get a clean cut that way and you won’t burn your hands. I often prepare my quiches in advance and let them cool down completely. Then I slice them when cold and reheat the individual slices in the oven for serving.
How I like to serve quiche
It’s optional to reheat quiche as it is often eaten at room temperature just like other cakes. In France, it’s considered an appetizer or first course. But in Germany, it’s seen as a main meal. Serve it together with a green salad and you won’t need anything else to go with it.
Quiche freezes perfectly which is one of the reasons why I love to eat it for breakfast. I just freeze any leftovers and put them in the oven for 15 minutes in the morning. It’s better than any bread roll. I sometimes wonder why it’s not considered the ultimate breakfast food in Germany.
4.6 ounces (130 g) butter, cut into 1/2-inch cubes, chilled
1 egg, size L
For the filling:
21 ounces (300 g) white asparagus, peeled and trimmed
21 ounces (300 g) green asparagus, trimmed
1.8 ounces (50 g) wild garlic
3.5 ounces (100 g) goat cheese
For the quiche batter:
1/2 cup whole milk
1/2 cup crème fraîche
2 eggs, size L
freshly grated nutmeg, to taste
1 teaspoon salt
Prepare the shortcrust pastry:
Mix the flour and salt. Then start incorporating the cold butter cubes into the flour. Use your hands to knead the mixture and work fast. Once the mixture looks crumbly and dry, like breadcrumbs, start adding the egg and knead the dough very briefly until it comes together. If the dough doesn’t come together, add one or two tablespoons of ice-cold water. Don’t overwork the dough. Once it comes together, stop kneading immediately and press it into a flat disk, about 4 inches in diameter. Wrap tightly with tinfoil and let the dough cool in the fridge for at least half an hour.
Roll out your pastry crust:
Take your shortcrust pastry out of the fridge and roll it out into a circle that is a little larger than the one of your quiche dish or pie form (mine is 11 ounces (28 cm) in diameter). Spread a thin layer of butter on the surface of your quiche dish or pie form and sprinkle with a little bit of flour to make it nonstick. Transfer the shortcrust pastry into your quiche dish or pie form. Trim off any excess dough from the sides and use it to repair any cracks in your pastry. Put the quiche dish or pie form in the fridge for at least half an hour to cool it down and preheat your oven to 390 °F (200 °C).
Prepare the filling:
In a large pot of heavily boiling salted water, blanch the white asparagus for about 8 minutes or until tender. Take out the asparagus and shock immediately in ice water to stop the cooking process. Blanch the green asparagus for 5 minutes or until tender and shock in ice water afterward as well. Blanch the wild garlic for 10 seconds, then drain it and shock it in water as well. Finely chop the blanched wild garlic leaves.
Blind-bake your crust:
Take a fork and pierce the pastry crust so that it is covered with many tiny holes. Cover the pastry with parchment paper and put some dried chickpeas or beans on top of it to put some weight on the bottom crust. Bake the pastry crust on the lower rack of your oven for 10 minutes. Take it out and remove the chickpeas and parchment paper. Put it back into the oven and bake for another 10 minutes. Take it out of the oven again and fix any cracks in the crust using your leftover pastry trimmings.
Prepare the batter:
In a blender, combine the milk, crème fraîche, eggs, nutmeg, and salt. Blend the batter to aerate it. Add the chopped wild garlic leaves into the batter.
Assemble and bake your quiche:
Trim the asparagus tips so that you can arrange them in a circle inside the quiche crust. Arrange them inside the quiche crust alternating between green and white asparagus tips. Take some of your asparagus trimmings and use them to fill in any leftover space between the asparagus tips. Pour the quiche batter over your asparagus and spread it out evenly. Crumble the goat cheese on top. Put the quiche in the oven on the middle rack and bake at 390 °F (200 °C) for about half an hour or until the batter is fully set. If using a thermometer, pull your quiche out once the custard has reached an internal temperature of 170 °F (75 °C). Let the quiche rest for at least 15 minutes before slicing. Serve immediately or at room temperature. After slicing, the quiche can also be easily reheated in the oven.