An old favorite with a new twist

Sourdough Quiche

If someone were to ask me what my signature dish was, I would probably have to say tomato zucchini quiche. I have been making this dish for years. It has a flaky whole grain butter crust. Sweet tomatoes cooked just until the juices flow. Zucchini sautéed in the pan juices of the tomatoes with herbs. Sharp cheese; it’s a gorgeous creation that I am always happy to serve.
Years ago, I wanted to bake a tart out of the Greens cookbook. It was an unusual tart with a yeasted crust. I made it once and soon forgot about it. I didn’t enjoy the crust and longed for my butter pastry. The tart itself was strangely not delicious. I went back to standard quiche and forgot about this little dalliance.
I planned to bake with my sourdough this week and nervously realized that it was getting late if I wanted to participate in a fun little weekly blogging event that I have become so hooked on. I knew I would need lunch the next day and started to think about that ill fated yeasted crust of the past. I am a much better cook now than I was years ago and I am now the proud owner of a tasty sourdough starter.
Armed the next day with my active starter, Deborah Madison’s updated olive oil yeasted tart dough recipe as my guide and my imagination, I set out to remake my favorite quiche. I wanted a flavorful crust so I added lemon zest and herbs to the dough. After my problems last week with the flaky sourdough rolls, I added the starter on top of the amount of liquid called for in the original recipe. The result was a beautiful silky soft dough flecked with goodies.

I added caramelized onions and fresh herbs to my filling. I have never been able to make my quiche in the 35 minutes called for in most recipes. The tomatoes may be the culprit so I baked the quiche for 55 minutes using a pie crust shield during the last 20 minutes of baking to protect that lovely crust.

The result? Delicious! The crust was moist and herbal under the filling and crunchy at the edges, reminiscent of the sourdough pizza crust I make which has a toothsome quality and a grainy, malted flavor.

The filling was a mélange of different flavors due to the layers of cheese, herbed veggies and custard.

I would like to submit this delicious concoction to this week’s YeastSpotting event on Wild Yeast. Susan usually posts the new submissions by Friday so click here to see what the other talented bakers decided to make this week.


Sourdough Quiche Slice

Tomato Zucchini Quiche with a Sourdough Crust
½ cup active sourdough starter
½ cup room temperature water

3 tablespoons olive oil

1 egg, beaten

½ tsp salt

1 cup unbleached white flour

¾ cup stone ground whole wheat flour

1 tbsp minced chives

¾ tbsp minced fresh rosemary

½ tsp lemon zest


½ cup grated sharp cheddar cheese

¼ cup grated parmesano reggiano

1 – 2 tbsp olive oil

5 -6 chives roughly chopped

1 sprig fresh rosemary, leaves minced

3-4 sprigs fresh oregano, leaves removed from stems and chopped

Dried basil, to taste

Fresh ground black pepper

¼ red onion, sliced thin

2 small heirloom tomatoes, sliced

1 medium zucchini, julienned

3 eggs beaten

1 cup milk

Paprika for garnishing

Prepare the crust:

In a large bowl, mix together the starter, water, olive oil, egg and salt. Stir in the white and whole wheat flours until combined well. When the dough feels stiff, turn it out onto a lightly floured board. Knead the dough until it is smooth and elastic, about 5 minutes. Use a bench scraper to keep the dough from sticking to the board as you knead. The dough is a little sticky. Form the dough into a smooth round and place it into a greased bowl. Cover with a clean towel and let the dough rise between an hour and an hour and fifteen minutes. Press the dough into an oiled 9 “ pie pan, making sure the sides of the dough are thicker than the bottom and that the dough fills to the top of the pan. Let the dough sit, covered until you are done making the filling.

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.


Heat one tbsp olive oil over medium heat in a skillet. Add the onions and a pinch of rosemary and cook until limp and beginning to caramelize (about 5 -6 minutes). Transfer the onions to a bowl. If the skillet seems dry, add a little more of the olive oil. Add the tomato slices and all the oregano, a pinch of the chives and the remaining rosemary. Cook without stirring until juicy but still firm (about 3 -4 minutes). Stir the tomatoes gently so they don’t break up, but the herbs mix in. Transfer the tomatoes to the bowl of onions, being careful not to transfer much tomato juice. The pan should be full of juices and you may not need to add more oil, add the zucchini, the remaining chives, a sprinkling of dried basil to taste and a few grinds of black pepper. Cook the zucchini until just tender but before it browns. Remove the zucchini from the pan and let it cool a little bit.

Mix the beaten eggs and milk to make your custard.

Assemble quiche:

Put the pie pan on a cookie sheet. This will keep the quiche from dripping all over the oven if it overflows and give you a tray to carry the quiche to the oven. Sprinkle cheddar and then parmesan onto the surface of the crust. Add the veggies on top of the cheese. Pour the custard over the filling. Sprinkle the surface of the custard with sweet paprika. Put the quiche still on the cookie sheet, into the oven where it will bake for 50 -55 minutes. At about 35 minutes, check the quiche. If the crust is looking nice and browned, use a pie crust shield to keep the crust from burning. Ovens vary, so keep checking the quiche every few minutes up to 55 minutes. When the quiche is firm all the way to the middle, it does not jiggle, it is time to remove it from the oven. Let the quiche cool considerably before you dig in. I was too anxious (the quiche was still pretty hot) and if you look closely at my pictures, you can tell the middle of the quiche did not set as well as I would liked it to have. So…. patience, patience!!