Yield: Yields about 48 mini-quiches
Servings: 6 as a main course
Take away the fuss of a crust, and a quiche makes a perfect weeknight dinner: quick and delicious. The basic batter is a snap to make, and depending on what you add to it, the variations are endless. You can also bake mini quiches as hors d’oeuvres (as shown here).
Position a rack in the top third of the oven and heat the oven to 425°F.
Heat the butter or oil in a 10-inch skillet over medium heat. Add the bacon and shallots and cook, stirring, until they begin to brown, 8 to 10 minutes. Stir in the sugar and cook until the bacon and shallots turn deep golden brown, about 4 minutes. Remove from the heat and add the vinegar. Stir in the sun-dried tomatoes; set aside to cool.
Put the cornstarch in a medium bowl. Whisking steadily, slowly pour in 1/2 cup of the milk, mixing until quite smooth. Whisk in the whole eggs and egg yolks, mixing again until smooth, and then gradually whisk in the rest of the milk, the cream, salt, and cayenne.
Butter or oil a 2-quart, 7×11-inch Pyrex dish or an 8×11-inch ceramic gratin dish. Spread the ham and mushroom mixture over the bottom of the pan. Scatter on the Brie and parsley.
Whisk the batter in case it has settled and then pour it into the baking dish. Bake until the top is deep golden and the custard is set (insert a pick in the center to check; it should be softly set, neither liquid nor firm), 25 to 30 minutes. Let stand for 30 minutes before serving.
Mini Crustless Quiches: Omit the cheese and chop the sun-dried tomatoes more finely. Heat the oven to 450°F and oil mini muffin tins. Put 1 tsp. of the bacon-tomato mixutre into each muffin cup and add a pinch of chopped parsley. Add 2 Tbs. batter to each muffin cup. Bake until the quiches puff and start to turn golden, 15 to 18 minutes. Let cool for 20 minutes and then carefully run a paring knife or offset spatula around the rim of each muffin cup. Carefully lift each quiche out of its cup.
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Why trim the rind off the cheese?
This was really quite good. We did it in a 2 quart oval gratin. Nice balance of sweet from the sun-dried tomatoes and salt from the bacon. We used a soft Fontina instead of Brie because we had Fontina on hand. We found the texture to be quite nice. I'd be proud to serve this to a guest.
Good although I spent more time than I expected to. Not nearly enough batter to make 48 minis (at 2T per cup, per recipe) -- more like 30. They turned out a little "floppy" -- might add an additional egg next time. Adding a bit of vinegar to the "gubbins" was a good idea.
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