Quiche is an awesomely easy dish to make, and so versatile! You can literally put whatever you have on hand in a quiche, and with the right cheese, it can be fantastic! Traditionally, however, quiche has a crust, and a pastry one at that. My gluten free pastry crust recipes were a bit more effort than I felt like, and I wanted to do something different. I have eaten out at restaurants before where salads etc. were served in molded parmesan shells, and wanted to see if something like that might work here. It was a bit of a gamble – but then, what isn’t when you are baking in a gluten free kitchen?
Overall the parmesan crusted quiche was a success – the parmesan crust looked completely awesome once it was molded into the pie pan! Though i was a bit scatterbrained, and naïvely forgot to realize that if I melted the parmesan cheese at 375 in order to mold it as it cooled, if I then baked the quiche at 375 it was going to melt again. Oops! But it all worked out. I think folding the crust back over itself rather than letting the cheese hang over the edge was definitely a good idea, as was gently covering it in aluminum foil. This was originally done to keep it from burning while the quiche baked, but I think it served the dual purpose of holding the cheese in place so it wouldn’t melt onto the bottom of my oven and make a mess. But that also meant the part of the crust underneath the quiche custard melted into the creamy eggy goodness. Mmm! The crust, being made of parmesan, was definitely pretty salty. Whatever you do, do not add any more salt to this dish! When eaten with the quiche custard together, it’s fine. But if you eat pieces of the crust on its own, it may be a bit much.
This recipe for quiche is a bit more dense than some I have had. But it always works and is my standard (5 eggs, 1 cup cream)- I think traditionally one is supposed to use a lower egg to cream ratio. Really there is a little wiggle room there. I don’t even use a measuring cup anymore when I add the cream (or half & half) – I just pour until it looks about right.
2 cups grated parmesan cheese
5 strips bacon, cooked and diced**
extra virgin olive oil**
about 12 skinny asparagus spears cut into bite size pieces**
about 3/4 cup onion, diced**
1 cup heavy cream or half/half
pepper to taste
1 cup grated sharp white cheddar
** ingredients are totally interchangeable with whatever you have on hand that would go well together.
1. Preheat oven to 375F. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper, and spread grated parmesan out onto the paper evenly. Bake for about 7 min, until bubbly, but just before it starts to brown.
2. Remove from the oven and quickly transfer the parchment paper with the bubbling parm. off of the baking sheet and onto another surface.
3. Wait 30 – 45 s, and then flip it so parm. side is down and fit it into your pie dish. Slowly peel back off the parchment paper, and any cheese left hanging off the side of the pan can be folded over (slowly so it doesn’t tear) back onto the crust.
You can see my dad doing this while I was taking the photos –
4. Meanwhile (you can probably start this once you have the parm. in the oven), saute the asparagus and onion in some olive oil until cooked desired amount. Reserve the prettiest asparagus pieces for the top.
5. Place asparagus/onion, bacon and then 1/2 cup grated cheddar in the pie. Make egg mixture by beating eggs, cream, herbs, and pepper. Add egg mixture to the pie, top with the rest of cheese, and the reserved asparagus spears.
6. Very gently cover the parm. crust edges with aluminum foil.
7. Bake at 375F for about 30 min. The crust will melt again as it bakes. It is advisable to have something on the rack below in case of spills. The crust on the bottom of the quiche will completely melt back into the quiche, and taste super yummy. The crust that was exposed out of the egg mixture.