A quiche is always handy for a meal away from home - such as a picnic or to take on holiday. Quiche Lorraine is the traditional combination of cheese, egg and bacon, here in small 2-portion foil dishes.
Quiches in foil dishes make ideal travelling food. Once you've eaten the contents you can bin the dish (for re-cycling of course) or take it home to use again.
Quiche Lorraine - a French classic
This is an easy version of the traditional French quiche. It still contains all the main ingredients - bacon, eggs and cheese in a pastry case - and anyone can make it.
Key Ingredients in Quiche Lorraine
Quiche filling ingredients
You could use streaky bacon here, preferably smoked, and I have successfully done that but for this version I've used lardons - easy to find in most supermarkets.
What are lardons?
Really, lardons are just a thick piece of bacon (a slab not a rasher) cut into small cubes or matchsticks. The exact dimensions vary, and I don't do it myself so I go with whatever the butcher/supermarket/meat box offers.
I'm pretty sure the French don't use extra-mature Cheddar, but it's what I use as a default for cooking. Use whatever you have, but a nice strong flavour helps. In case you're wondering, Gruyère is probably more authentic.
Quiche pastry case
Pâte Brisée or Shortcrust?
Although I wouldn't dream of making puff pastry, I do make the pastry for savoury flans. The quiche pastry recipe that I use is for Pâte Brisée. It's like shortcrust pastry but has an egg yolk added, which improves the texture and flavour. Using ready-made shortcrust pastry is perfectly fine if you prefer, but my method takes only 5 minutes in the processor.
Secrets of Success
Don't roll the pastry!
My pastry recipe is quick and easy - whizzed up in a food processor - and you don't roll the pastry. Press it into the flan dish carefully so you don't completely distort the foil dish, but you can always push it back into shape!
What else do you need to make Quiche Lorraine?
- Splash screen - Reduces fat splashes when you're frying the lardons or bacon.
- Foil flan dishes - You can buy these in various sizes. This recipe needs 2 15cm (6-inch) dishes.
- Microplane Spice Mill - I'm a big fan of freshly grated nutmeg and I use a lot of it, especially in quiches. I recently upgraded to a Microplane mill. What a difference it makes - quick and easy to grate as much as you want!
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Quiche Lorraine - picnic size
For the pastry case:
- 1 recipe Pâte Brisée OR
- 250 g ready-made shortcrust pastry
For the Quiche Lorraine filling:
- 200 g strong Cheddar cheese
- ½ teaspoon oil (2.5ml)
- 200 g smoked lardons or streaky bacon
- Freshly ground pepper
- Grated nutmeg
- 3 large eggs
- 250 ml milk
- 2 teaspoon cornflour/cornstarch (10ml)
- ½ teaspoon mustard powder (2.5ml) OR
- 1 teaspoon English mustard (5ml)
- Set the oven to 220°C/ 200°C fan/ gas mark 7/ 425°F
- Grate the cheese.
For the pastry case:
- Press the pastry into the flan dishes with your fingers
- Blind-cook the pastry cases for 7 minutes, i.e. put a piece of baking parchment on the pastry and cover with baking beans (to stop the pastry rising)
- Remove the baking parchment and beans and cook the pastry cases for a further 6-7 minutes.
For the Quiche Lorraine:
- Heat the oil in a large frying pan on MEDIUM-HIGH heat
- Add the lardons to the pan and cook for 2 minutes, turning frequently
- Turn the heat to LOW and cook until the fat is golden brown and beginning to crisp. (About 5 minutes for lardons, maybe less for bacon.)
- Sprinkle a third of the cheese evenly over the base of each quiche
- Spoon the lardons evenly over the cheese
- Season with a little salt and plenty of pepper
- Grate some nutmeg over the lardons (or sprinkle 2-3ml if pre-grated)
- Blend the eggs, milk, cornflour, and mustard in a processor or with a mixer and pour over the filling
- Sprinkle the rest of the cheese evenly over the quiches
- Bake the quiches for 20 minutes, then turn the oven down to190°C/ 170°C fan/ gas mark 5/ 375°F until golden brown on top.
Everyday Cooks Tips:Make ahead:
- You can make and cook the pastry cases ahead of time. Wrap in clingfilm and keep in the fridge for up to 2 days or in the freezer for a month
- The completed quiche can be frozen for up to 3 months.