14 May 2012

Quiche with Carmelized Onion and Gouda

I think my camera broke when it realized it was supposed to photograph this wreck of a quiche. George and I laughed when we saw it and so did Sally. Picture this in your mind: a craggy, ragged square brown crust with a flat, thin puddle of bright yellow goo leaking from a crack in the side. Two inches tall of crust empty of any filling. The egg did NOT puff up into the thick, fluffy golden cake that every quiche exhibits.

Where did it all go so wrong? I don't know. I followed the recipe pretty closely except that we didn't have cream so I used soymilk. From Mark Bittman's How to Cook Everything Vegetarian, I used the onion quiche recipe, but I substituted aged gouda for 1 Cup of carmelized onion. I used his savory pie rust recipe, with half all-purpose flour and half whole-wheat flour. I prebaked the chilled crust for 10 minutes weighted down with buttered foil and dry beans. I carmelized the onions using the recipe in Perfect Vegetables from the Editors of Cooks' Illustrated. The onions tasted divine; they weren't the problem. By the way, carmelize onions this way:

2 lbs. thinly sliced onions (cooks down to about 1 1/4 Cup)
1 Tablespoon unsalted butter
1 Tablespoon canola oil
a few pinches salt
1 teaspoon brown sugar

1. Use an enormous non-stick skillet. On high heat, melt the butter with the oil.
2. Add the spices, stir, and then the onions and cook, stirring, 5 minutes until they start releasing their juices.
3. Turn the heat down to medium and continue to cook another 30-40 minutes until they are as brown, oozy, and sweet as you like them.

Anyway, then I took the prebaked crust from the pan and stuck it on a baking sheet, per Bittman's instructions. Sally thinks I probably shouldn't have done that—then the egg wouldn't have leaked out the crack in the side. I mixed together 6 eggs, 2 Cups soymilk, 1 Cup carmelized onions, 1 Cup grated gouda, and poured it into the prebaked crust. I baked the whole thing for about 40 minutes. It tasted buttery and flavorful after chilling several hours in the refrigerator but  looked absolutely ridiculous. I won't be making that again. Sally told me she despises Bittman—maybe next time I try quiche I'll go with Deborah Madison or Molly Katzen, or better yet, Gil Marks.

Comments and suggestions welcome!

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