Sweet caramelized onions dance with creamy Gruyère in velvety egg custard with a bit of tangy yogurt all nestled inside a flaky rosemary crust in this easy quiche recipe.
That hour when the sun starts to whisper its goodbye sends pinkish rays streaming through the kitchen window, bouncing off the surfaces and bottles, casting sharp shadows across smooth surfaces. The room becomes bright and darkened all at once, the light playing and dancing with each passing moment.
The subtle stinging of fresh cut shallots is fading as they cook to a sweet brown caramel that wafts from the pan. My hands are covered in white, a slight piney floral coming up from them as I work cold butter into rosemary-laced flour and turn it out onto the counter. There’s a nuttiness drifting through as Kiera grates a block of cheese across from me, rambling about school and swimming and things I should be paying attention to. Instead, I’m staring at her brown hair as it falls over her shoulders, wondering when she lost that soft innocence of being a child, her face now angular, her chin sharp.
“What else do we need, Mom?”
Her measuring cup is full of finely grated shreds of soft cheese, creamy before they’ve even started to melt. She’s picking up the tiny chunks that didn’t make it through the grater with her long fingers, chipped glitter polish at the ends, popping them into her mouth, wide blue eyes questioning.
“Rosemary for the eggs.”
The pots next to the window hold a mass of green, carefully transplanted from the garden in the fall. They are holding on to life in the cold winter weather, separated from the white world by just a pane of glass. Her careful fingers pluck a bit of the precious herb, releasing a fresh blow of bright, full pine that permeates the space as the thin green pieces are plucked from the stem.
Inviting my children into the kitchen isn’t always peaceful. In fact, most nights the sun has set a bit farther and the overhead lights are reluctantly flicked on, invading the room and casting tinted shades over the food in front of us. Small bodies run into longer legs; longer legs trip over small bodies crammed into tiny spaces. Voices are raised in an effort to be heard over each other, each competing for the attention of another.
Still the kids line up on the opposite side of the counter, the long bench pulled close, their hands willing to chop and mix, eager to engage. Plates are set out along the cool wood, and if you catch him at the right moment, your eight-year-old server, Kjell, will roll your silverware in a napkin before placing it beside the plate. Glasses are filled with water and milk, wine is poured, and all the bodies sit down together. Just before we eat there is a moment of silence where all the mouths have stopped, all the stirring ceased, grace is given, and dinner is served.
My children have taken to calling quiche “scrambled egg pie,” mixing familiar with fancy in a dish everyone agrees on. Creamy eggs with herbs and cheese and caramelized shallots so sweet they bear no resemblance to their former raw selves work together against a crisp crust that is nothing more than my favorite pie crust with the addition of dried rosemary. It’s pure comfort food created by familiar hands in fleeting moments I know to foster and then hold tightly in my heart.
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon dried rosemary
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 cup (1 stick) cold, unsalted butter
2-3 tablespoons ice water
For the Filling:
2 tablespoons butter
4 shallots, thinly sliced
1 cup cream
1/3 cup Greek yogurt
2 teaspoons fresh rosemary, minced
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 cup shredded Gruyère
In a large bowl, combine the flour, dried rosemary, and the salt for the crust. Stir to mix. Add in the butter. Using a fork or pastry cutter, cut the butter into the flour until it has pea-sized clumps. Drizzle the first two tablespoons of water over the crust and mix. If the crust is starting to hold together slightly, gather into a disk and press together. Add the extra tablespoon of water if the crust is not holding together quite yet.
Wrap the disk of dough with plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator to rest while you prepare the rest of the quiche. It can be held for up to two days in the refrigerator or in the freezer for up to a week.
To bake the quiche: Preheat the oven to 375º F. In a small sauté pan over medium-high heat. Add in the shallots and stir to coat in the butter. Cover and reduce the heat to medium-low. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 15 minutes until shallots are golden brown and caramelized.
In a medium bowl, beat the eggs. Whisk in cream, Greek yogurt, rosemary, and salt.
Roll out the pastry dough to fit a 10″ tart pan or an 8″ pie plate. Press the dough into place, trimming any excess dough. Evenly layer the caramelized shallots and the Gruyère on the crust. Pour the egg mixture over the top.
Bake for 40-45 minutes until center of the quiche is set and the top is turning golden brown. Let rest before slicing. Serve warm.
Makes 8 slices.