Quiche me now
IN his Guidebook To All That Is Truly Masculine, script writer ( Goldeneye, Tomorrow Never Dies) and Vanity Fair contributing editor Bruce Feirstein claims that real men don’t eat quiche. In fact. that’s the title of his book which satirises the stereotypes of “real men” in today’s world. In his 1982 New York Times bestseller, Feirstein asserts that men who do eat quiche are mere trendchasers – posers who bring their masculinity into question as they follow lifestyle trends (in the world of food, the quiche has moved back and forth from being trendy to being pedestrian and too common to being trendy again!).
“We’ve become a nation of wimps. Pansies. Quiche eaters,” he says. “Alan Alda types – who cook and clean and relate to their wives. Phil Donahue clones – who are warm and sensitive and vulnerable.”
I haven’t read Feirsten’s book but I’ve read enough about it to know that he uses the quiche as a metaphor. Feirsten is apparently tonguein-cheek about the whole quiche deal. I mean, surely, real men are more self-assured to be bothered with defining their masculinity, Singled out this week is quiche, a dish that is as versatile as it is flavourful. especially if the price they have to hard-pressed to find a quiche with pay is to forgo a delicious savory a bread-dough shell. Most quiches egg-custard pie. use shortcrust pastry though some
Whether it originated in cooks opt for puff pastry. I prefer Germany (some believe the using shortcrust pastry as I like the “quiche” comes from the German contrast of the rich, crisp crust with word “kuchen” or cake) or France the soft custard. (particularly the province of You can eat quiche for breakfast Lorraine – hence the iconic Quiche (leftover quiche that is cold and Lorraine), when you break it down, straight out of the fridge works for the quiche is a rich, open-faced me), lunch, tea or dinner because, custard that’s encased in a crisp, depending on what you put in savoury pastry. your pie, it’s a wholesome meal
There are three essential ingre– you have eggs, vegetables, meat dients to a quiche: eggs, cream and and pastry. It’s a complete meal by pastry. The Quiche Lorraine (with anyone’s standards. If you want to bacon) – regarded as the original fancy it up, you can serve it with a quiche – is said to be made without side of salad. cheese but most quiches have a fair Another plus? It’s quick to make. amount of cheese in them. I like If you’re making your own pascheese, so for me cheese makes the try, it takes a little more time not fourth essential ingredient. because the pastry is difficult or
Basic ingredients aside, what complicated but because you need you put in your quiche is entirely to chill the pastry, shape it in your up to you. That’s the beauty of the pie dish, chill it again, blind bake it quiche: it’s incredibly versatile. and then fill it up with the custard There is no end to the combinaand cook it one last time. If you’re tion of fillings you can throw in. buying store-bought shortcrust or Mushrooms, caramelised onions, puff pastry, the process is speeded broccoli, leek, crabmeat, salmon, up substantially. tomatoes, pesto ... the possibilities My favourite filling is a combinaare endless. tion of leek and mushrooms and
The crust of the quiche was origiplain caramalised onions. Every nally made with bread dough – like now and then I like to experia pizza – but these days, you’d be ment with fillings ... just to test the