There is something rather retro about quiches. For me, they always seem to bring back memories of buffets in the ’90s. Luckily, most of them are fond memories, which I guess is why I continue to make a lot of quiches. This onion quiche with Brie and Gruyère is my own variation of a classic French onion quiche, basically a product of me being really fond of both French onion quiche and cheese, especially Brie. The result is a very soft, creamy and fluffy quiche with lots of rich and deep taste, perfect for lazy autumn lunches, dinners, brunches… or, buffets!
The trick to a really good quiche, though, is a really good crust. The only way to achieve that goal is by keeping the dough, and the butter that goes in it, as cold as possible and letting the dough rest well before baking. Therefore, whatever corners you are tempted to cut, don’t cut the resting time in the fridge.
The good thing, however, about shortcrust dough is that it can easily made beforehand. In fact it will only benefit from a really nice rest in the fridge before you make the quiche. Ideally it should rest for at least an hour or longer, but really, you can leave the dough for up to two days in the fridge before you make the quiche.
Onion quiche with Brie and Gruyère cheese (serves 4)
For the shortcrust dough:
3.5 oz (100 g) salted butter, cold and cut into cubes
6.3 oz (180 g) all purpose flour
1/4 tsp salt
1 egg yolk
1-2 tbsp cold water
Dried beans or chickpeas (only used when prebaking the crust)
For the filling:
3 medium sized yellow onions
3 tbsp canola (rapeseed) oil or butter
6.8 oz (200 ml) whole cream
3 large eggs
1.8 oz (50 g) Gruyère cheese, grated
3.5 oz (100 g) Brie, cut into thin slices
About 2 tbsp fresh oregano leaves, coarsely chopped
1. Start with preparing the shortcrust dough. First, mix the salt into the flour and add the cold butter cubes. Then, using either a pastry blender or your fingers, mix the butter into the flour until it looks like coarse meal. Now pour in the egg yolk and quickly knead the dough until it comes together. Shape into a ball and let it rest for at least 30 min. (or up to two days) in the fridge.
2. Next, prepare a baking or pie pan of about 8 inches (20 cm) in diameter. Preferably use a springform where the bottom comes lose. This way you can easily remove the quiche from the pan and serve on a platter. If you use a springform, place a sheet of baking parchment on the bottom. Then tighten the spring around it, so only the bottom is covered with the parchment.
3. Sprinkle a bit of flour on your (cold) table top (granite table tops are excellent for shortcrust dough) and roll it flat and round till it’s about 10 inches (25 cm) in diameter. Carefully transfer the dough to the springform or pie pan and fit it with your fingers by pressing it gently into the bottom and sides. Cut off any excess dough that might go over the edges. Put in the fridge again to rest for at least 30 more minutes or longer. (If you’ve already kept it in the fridge for two days you may skip this extra rest.)
4. When the dough is done resting preheat the oven to 400 F (200 C). Take a piece of baking parchment and place on top of the dough, making sure that the sides of the dough will be covered too. Then pour in dry beans or dry chickpeas on top of the parchment. This will make sure the crust keeps its shape when you prebake it (discard them after baking). Now, pop it in the oven an bake for no more than 10 min.
5. For the filling, slice the onions into thin half slices and give them a quick sauté in canola oil or butter for about 5 min. Make sure they don’t brown. Season them well with salt and pepper and pour them into the prebaked quiche crust. Distribute the grated Gruyère over the onions. Whisk the eggs and cream together and also season the cream well with salt and pepper, and then pour it over the onion cheese filling. Finally, distribute the slices of Brie evenly on top and drizzle with chopped fresh oregano. Bake in the oven for about 40 minutes or until the filling has set.
If you did use a springform, then when you take the quiche out of the oven, let it cool just a little bit, and then loosen the crust with a knife and remove the spring. Then carefully lift it off the bottom and peel off the parchment, or leave the parchment on, and serve your onion quiche with Brie and Gruyère on a nice platter.
Maybe you’d like these other recipes inspired by classic French cooking: