Week 3 - Quiche: Simple, Powerful and Heavenly
Quiche is a delicious, open-faced savory custard tart that originates in Joan of Arc's home region of France. Which turns out to make perfect sense.
by Lynley Jones
A thirteen year-old peasant girl stands in her father's garden on a summer's day, the noontime sun warming her skin. Suddenly, she sees a bright light and hears the voice of an angel telling her not to marry, because God has bigger plans for her. On this day, she is afraid.
As an older teenager, this girl would courageously lead the underdog French army against the powerful English, brazenly stand up to the most learned and powerful men of her day, and defy every expectation as she lived a life that would one day inspire generations of her countrymen to fervent patriotism.
She would come to be known, of course, as Joan of Arc.
Quiche From Lorraine
About 100 years later, Joan's region of France - Lorraine - would also be the birthplace of quiche. This seems about right.
Like Joan, quiche seems as if it should be more fragile than it is. A liquid egg custard, filled with skittish ingredients threatening to run, surrounded by flaky Pâte Brisée, so delicate it seems likely to fall apart at any moment.
And yet it doesn't. It holds it all together with a firm embrace, tender but secure, through the fiery furnace and out again. In the end, it stands on its own, confident - without the assistance of even a standard pie dish.
Why the Ish?
I call this recipe Quiche, Lorraine-ish. A true Quiche Lorraine does not contain cheese, although this is a common ingredient in American recipes that use the name. Also, I've included scallions rather than the sauteed onions that are sometimes used. The scallions add some color and make the dish a bit easier to throw together, since they don't have to be cooked separately.
For further reading on Joan of Arc, check out The Maid and The Queen: The Secret History of Joan of Arc by Nancy Goldstone - a great read.
Pictures From Cooking Class
Each week, I am honored to bring all this sophisticated deliciousness to local public school children. Check out the pictures from these cooking classes below.