Friday, April 26, 2013

Deep Dish Ham Quiche

My family enjoys quiche.  I figure anything made in a pie shell is good, and since the clever girl agrees that makes dinner easier at times!  This is the Deep Dish Ham Quiche by Tyler Florence.  It is different than my normal quiche, in that this one is almost custard-like on the inside, with a smooth velvety texture.  YUM.  Since it is deep dish, you get lots of that yummy velvety stuff.  Plus, unlike most quiches, it does not contain any cheese.  Different, huh?  Oh, and it includes caramelized onions.  Is there anything that isn't made better with caramelized onions?  Well, in the savory food category, anyway?  I do think caramelized onion ice cream would be dreadful, but in savory items, it is ALL GOOD.  I wouldn't say this is a HEALTHY recipe, but every so often you just have to dive in and go all the way with food.   I did try to make it a "little" healthier but it is what it is.

Deep-Dish Ham Quiche
adapted from Tyler Florence, Food Network
1 pastry shell - I use this recipe but you could use a store-bought one as well!
3 tablespoons extra-virgin-olive oil
2 large Vidalia onions, sliced
3/4 pound smoked ham, cubed
8 large eggs
1 quart heavy cream (! used 2 cups 2% milk and 2 cups heavy cream)
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Roll your pastry/pie crust into a 14-inch circle about 1/4 inch thick.  Carefully place the dough into a 9-inch springform pan and press the dough firmly onto the bottom and the sides so it fits tightly.  Place the springform pan on a cookie sheet so it is easier to move in and out of the oven.  Your oven will thank you if there are any leaks, plus the quiche is pretty heavy so the cookie sheet helps there, too.

To make the filling:
Heat a skillet over medium-low heat.  Coat the pan with oil and add the onions.  Allow to slowly cook, stirring, until they caramelize and release their natural sugars.  Add a few tablespoons of water to help the onions break down if you need to.  This can take 30 minutes to an hour, so you could do this in advance if you prefer.  Once the onions are nice and caramelized, add the ham and cook, stirring, for about 10 minutes to get some color in the ham.  Remove from the heat.  

Preheat oven to 375F.  In a large bowl, beat the eggs until frothy.  Add the cream/milk, season with salt and pepper.  Arrange the caramelized onions and ham over the bottom of the crust and carefully pour in the cream/egg mixture.  The filling should be about 1 inch from the top of the pan.  Cover loosely with foil and bake for 1 1/2 hours.  Remove the foil and bake for another 15 minutes, or until the quiche is set, puffy, and jiggles slightly.  Remove to a wire rack and allow to cool for 30 minutes before serving. 

This recipe takes a bit more time than your average quiche recipe but I encourage you to give it a try.  It makes a nice dinner and could be a special brunch dish as well.  I like that it is different - more custardy, no cheese...  It really is delicious!

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