Do you love asparagus? Spring means asparagus at our house. We love it just about any way we can get it–raw with dip, in pasta or green salads, or lightly steamed and sprinkled with a squeeze of fresh lemon juice. One of our all-time favorite ways to enjoy asparagus is baked up crunchy-tender in a delicate egg-and-cream custard quiche–an Easter or Mother’s Day brunch delight!
Make it extra special with a dill-infused pastry shell
For this quiche, I bake my pastry shell from scratch using this whole wheat pie crust recipe, and adding fresh, snipped dill to the flour mixture for an extra little taste sensation. Baking my own crust adds about forty-five minutes to the overall time. It sure is worth it.
How much dill? I snip until I have about a teaspoon. Then I whisk it into the flour mixture before adding the liquid. Those little hits of dill in the pastry give a subtle, but piquant dimension to the overall flavors of the dish.
Serve with fresh spring greens or a simple side of fruit
For a casual at-home brunch or take-along lunch, this quiche is lovely served plain with a few slices of sweet Fiji and tart Granny Smith apples. For a fun Mother’s Day brunch, we dress it up a bit with with a side of spring greens, preferably some that have a few flower blossoms in them, drizzled with raspberry or pomegranate vinaigrette.
No matter how we serve it, quite often I top it off with our favorite 5-Minute creamy cheese dip and sauce and a little dill for garnish, which came in handy today when I scorched our Easter quiche. I forgot to set the timer after removing the pie ring! Fortunately, that little bit of scorching only seemed to enhance the rich flavor.
So here’s a little grandmotherly advice from a cook who’s goofed up plenty in the kitchen: Always take your cooking and baking mistakes in stride and laugh them off. Enjoy the food anyway, unless you’ve ruined it. Then order in. Ha!
Asparagus quiche recipe with dill-laced whole wheat crust
Keep this one simple. Let the asparagus and custard shine in their savory, dill-infused pastry, with a simple fresh, mini salad of fruit or greens, even microgreens.
- 9″ Par-baked whole wheat pie shell
- 1/2 lb Artisan semi-hard cheese, such as Robusto Gouda Uniekaasr or Valais Raclette
- 1 Bunch fresh organic asparagus spears, about 1/2 lb
- 1/3 C Yellow onion, finely chopped
- 4 Lg Eggs
- 1-1/4 C Half and half
- 1/8 t Ground white pepper
- Preheat oven to 350º F.
- Prepare a bowl of ice water large enough to hold a second smaller bowl. Slice each asparagus spear down the middle and reserve three pieces for garnish. Cutting on a slight diagonal, slice the remaining spears into half-inch pieces. Saute lightly in water over medium-high heat to caramelize slightly. Remove from pan to a cold bowl, preferably steel, and place over icy water in the larger bowl.
- Meanwhile, prepare the custard. With wire whisk, beat eggs till lightly colored but not frothy. Whisk in half and half and pepper. Now is a good time to chop the onion and grate the cheese, if you don’t have pre-chopped and grated on hand.
- Combine the cooled, sauteed asparagus with the onion and fold the grated cheese into the vegetables. Gently scrape vegetables and cheese into the par-baked pie shell.
- Reserve 2 teaspoons custard mixture and drizzle rest over vegetables and cheese. Brush crust edges lightly with reserved custard.
- Cover crust lightly with a pie ring and bake at 350° F for 25 minutes. Remove the pie ring, decorate the top with the three reserved asparagus halves and return quiche to oven for 10 minutes more, baking until custard is mostly firm and starting to brown ever so slightly on top. The center may be a bit jiggly.
- Remove to cooling rack and let rest 10-15 minutes before cutting, if you can stand it. The custard will continue to cook a bit and will set a little firmer.
Serve with a combination of fresh sweet and tart apple slices, fruit salad, or dress it up a little with fresh spring greens and a light raspberry or pomegranate vinaigrette. Refrigerate any leftovers. Leftovers, if you’re lucky enough to have them, make a wonderful easy-to-pack lunch or breakfast on the run.
Tell us about your favorite quiche recipe
If you have a favorite quiche recipe you’d care to share, link to it here. Have you tried it with a whole wheat crust? I encourage you to do so. Quiches and whole wheat pastry shells taste fantastic together.
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Dear Readers: If you think you’ve seen this recipe before, you may well have. In March 2014, as a writer on the now-defunct site Squidoo, I first published this recipe under the user name graceonline. In August 2014, HubPages, where I am known as ecogranny, bought Squidoo. I opted to have my Squidoo pages, including this recipe, transferred to the new site. Now, in March 2016, I’ve brought it home–to YayYay’s Kitchen.