Broccoli Quiche

To me, the idea of quiche seemed so foreign, seemingly an attainable convergence of French elegance and American abundance that had nothing to do with my childhood home. Firstly the idea for sitting down to a dairy family meal was unheard of the outside of Shavuot. I think my mother had one dairy pot and one dairy pan in the kitchen. Our entire dairy kitchen could fit into one small box. Mind you my parents were in no way anti-dairy, just that dairy on its own to them wasn’t a meal.

Newly married, my husband asked why we were eating meat every night for dinner and why didn’t we ever buy butter? My first answer was a blank look? If you didn’t have meat for dinner what exactly would you replace it with? Unless we were going out for pizza? And second, was what would you use your butter for? Well he said, it would be great to spread the butter on toast… yes I know I had a lot to learn.

Soon I started serving pasta and lasagne for dinner – who knew that was even an option a toast slathered in butter was a revelation! I couldn’t get enough of it. And all of a sudden I realized quiche was simply a savory pie, and I knew how to make each individual component – surely I could put all these newly acquired skills into one dish. After tons of experimenting and loads of failed attempts one night a year and a half after we were married I presented my husband with a broccoli quiche for dinner. I felt a whole new world had opened up to me and I gave myself permission to love dairy foods to cook them often and with gusto. This quiche out of all my dairy dishes is the one most requested by my family.

  • ½ recipe flakey pie dough, click here for recipe
  • 300g (from 1 small head) broccoli florets
  • 1 large onion, peeled and finely diced
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 100g (1 cup) grated mild cheese, such as cheddar or mozzarella
  • 175ml (¾ cup) whole milk
  • 4 eggs
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  1. Prepare flakey pie dough as per directions.
  2. Roll the dough to about a 30cm (12-inch) circle, about an ¼cm (⅛ inch) thick. Place the dough into a 22cm (9-inch) pie dish and press into the sides. Trim the dough so you have a 1cm (½ inch) overhand. Tuck the overhanging pastry under the edge of the pie dish, creating a double layer of pastry, and crimp the edge together. Place the pastry filled pie dish in the fridge for 10-15 minutes to set.
  3. Heat the oven to 180℃ (350℉). Place a large piece of baking paper on top of the chilled pastry, fill it all the way to the top with baking beans. Bake 30 minutes until the edges of the pastry have turned golden. Remove the baking beans, return the pastry to the oven, and bake 5 minutes longer until the inside of the pastry is golden as well. Remove from the oven. Do not turn the oven off.
  4. While the pastry is baking prepare the filling. Steam the broccoli until bright green and just tender, drain and set aside.
  5. Place a large saute pan over medium heat, once hot add the butter and oil, once butter is melted add the onion and saute, stirring occasionally until the onion is very soft and starting to turn golden. Turn off the heat and season the sauteed onions with salt and pepper.
  6. Place sauteed onions at the base of the baked pie shell spreading into an even layer, sprinkle half the cheese over the onions. Place the steamed broccoli on top of the cheese and sprinkle the remaining cheese over the broccoli. In a jug combine the eggs and milk, season with salt and pepper. Pour the milk and egg mixture over the rest of the ingredients. Be careful to not overfill the pie.
  7. Bake for 45-50 minutes until the center of the pie is just set. Cool for 10 minutes before serving. Quiche can be served warm or at room temperature.