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Considering the usual reaction to Brussels sprouts in my home, the may-I-have-more-please-Mum reaction to this quiche was surprising.
But actually, perhaps, I'm not surprised. While the individual ingredients may sound odd for a quiche (I mean, come on – Brussels sprouts and apple?), together they become something new and it's just downright delicious.
This recipe was born out of necessity. Brussels sprouts at my husband's farm overwintered very well and so they're a readily-available green this time of year, which our bodies crave but our taste buds seem to tire of fairly quickly. Therefore, I've been trying to get creative with using them and this quiche was a necessary experiment.
And one little secret: It's definitely popular at dinner while it's hot, but my favorite is to have it cold the next morning for breakfast. Just sayin' – you may want to hide a few slices ahead of time if you can!
Oh, and as a last note, the crust is based on the Perfect Frozen Pie Crust in my book, The DIY Pantry, so needless to say, it's my favorite. It's flaky and scrumptious and good. Enjoy!
Bacon, Brussels Sprouts, and Apple Quiche with an Herbed Crust
For the Crust
- 2 ½ cups all-purpose flour, spelt flour, or sprouted wheat flour
- 1 teaspoon whole cane sugar
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 2 tablespoons chopped herbs, chives or thyme work especially well in this recipe
- 8 tablespoons 1 stick butter, cut into cubes and chilled
- ½ cup palm shortening OR lard, preferably leaf lard
- ⅓ cup plus 1 tablespoon very cold water
- 1 tablespoon white or apple cider vinegar
For the Quiche
- 1 pound bacon, cut into 1-inch pieces
- 2 medium shallots, diced
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 pound Brussels sprouts, trimmed and halved
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- ¼ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
- 2 medium sweet apples, not tart, cored and diced
- 4 large eggs
- ½ cup sour cream
- 1 cup half and half
- ¼ cup grated gruyere, Swiss, or white Colby Jack cheese
For the Crust
- Combine the flour, sugar, salt, and herbs in a large bowl. Whisk to combine.
- Toss in the butter cubes and palm shortening and rub them in until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
- Combine the cold water and the vinegar, then pour over the crumbled mixture and stir or knead until the mixture comes together in a coherent ball.
- Divide into two balls, then press each into a 1-inch thick disc between two pieces of wax paper or parchment paper and refrigerate for 20-30 minutes.
- When the dough is chilled, roll each ball into a large circle about 1/8-inch thick. Make your circle large enough so that there is at least one inch of overhang over whatever pie or tart pan you've chosen to bake in.
- Place the dough circle into the baking dish and gently push it into place, pricking all over with a fork and cutting off the excess if necessary. (Remember that the dough will shrink slightly during baking.) Return the dough to the refrigerator and refrigerate for at least 15 minutes.
- Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350F. When the dough is chilled, weight it with beans or pie weights (if desired), cover with parchment paper, and bake for 10-15 minutes, just until the crust is dry on top but has not yet begun to brown.
- Remove from the oven, remove the weights, and set aside until ready to fill.
- (You may also freeze the crust at this point for future use.)
For the filling
- Over medium-high heat, saute the bacon pieces until crispy. Remove the bacon and set aside. Drain the grease, but keep 1-2 tablespoons in the pan.
- Meanwhile, blanche the Brussels sprouts by bringing a large pot of water to a boil, adding the Brussels sprouts for about 5 minutes, then removing to a prepared bowl of ice water. Once the Brussels sprouts have cooled completely, set them on a towel to dry slightly so they don't splatter excessively when they are added to the pan a bit later.
- Back in the pan with the bacon grease, add the diced shallots and saute over medium heat until translucent but not browned, 3-4 minutes. Add the garlic and saute until fragrant, about 30 seconds.
- Add the Brussels sprouts, toss, and saute until just beginning to caramelize, 6-7 minutes.
- Add the salt, pepper, nutmeg, and apples and toss again. Continue to saute, stirring occasionally, until the apples are soft but not mushy, 3-4 minutes. Remove from the heat and let cool to room temperature.
- When ready to bake, whisk together the eggs, sour cream, half and half, and grated cheese with a bit of extra salt and pepper if you're in the mood.
- Spoon the cooled filling into the parbaked crust, then pour the egg-cream mixture over the top.
- Place crust on a baking sheet (in case of spillage) and bake in a 350F oven for 35-45 minutes or until the middle is firm and jiggly rather than wet and splashy.
- Remove from oven and set aside at room temperature for at least 10 minutes before serving to firm up a bit.
- Eat immediately or refrigerate for 2-3 days.