I wasn’t the greatest quiche-fan before developing the techniques involved here. Yet now I make this recipe for every major gathering of family or friends. The secret is cream, obviously. It always is. I’ve often been told, “my quiche is too firm”, or that it’s too wobbly. Or just too eggy. If you use this cream:egg ratio – 300ml (1 tub) to 2 medium eggs – you’ll have a perfect quiche every time. Not even baking it for an hour too long will dent the ecstasy you’ll get from this brown savoury tart.
First, make the pastry. Weigh your flour and butter into a large bowl and rub them together with your fingertips until combined. Try to rub your thumb over the rest of your fingers, using them as a washboard. Keep going until they are like breadcrumbs.
Add your cold water and stir with the blade of a table knife until mostly combined, then use your hands to bring together into a flattish lump of dough. Wrap this lump in cling film and place it in the fridge to rest for 10 minutes.
Preheat your oven to 180C/160C fan/Gas 4, and grease a 12-inch metal tart tin with plenty of butter.
Roll out your chilled pastry on a floured surface to the thickness of a £1 coin. Transfer your sheet into your tin, and then trim around the edges, but leaving at least a centimetre hanging over. You can freeze any excess pastry.
Cover your pastry case with a sheet of baking paper and then weigh this down with a few copper coins. Bake for 15 minutes covered, then remove the paper and bake for another 10 minutes uncovered, before setting aside until the filling is ready. Once baked, you should trim off any excess pastry with a sharp knife.
Whilst the pastry case is baking, make the filling. Chop your onions, leeks and then bacon into thin-ish slices. In a frying pan, melt the butter over a medium heat and then add the onions, leeks and bacon. Fry them until completely soft and starting to go golden brown – if they’re sticking or browning too fast, add some water. This will take about 15–20 minutes.
Beat the eggs, cream and half the hard cheese together in a bowl and add a pinch of salt and pepper. Stir in your soft onions, leeks and bacon, then scoop this mixture into your blind-baked tart case. Sprinkle on top the rest of the cheese and bake for another 25–30 minutes, or until a deep golden brown.
The bacon here can be replaced with any cured meat or sausage. My personal favourite is chorizo – see if you can get the raw stuff. It turns the whole quiche a striking red colour.