Skip to main content Skip to footer site map

Jacques Pépin Makes Quiche Lorraine

Premiere: 12/2/2021 | 00:12:09 |

Pépin's recipe for quiche Lorraine, which is from the northeast part of France, is inspired by his mother. He also has a method for making dough that doesn't need to rest. "It's just the way my mother used to do, the quiche Lorraine in the style of Lyon."

About the Episode

“This is a classic dish from the northeast part of France. I use a simple pie dough, which I pre-bake, in a 10-inch fluted tart pan with removable bottom, before filling with crisp bacon, egg custard and the traditional Gruyère cheese.” —Jacques Pépin


For the dough:
1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
¼ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon sugar
½ cup unsalted butter, very cold
¼ to ½ cup ice-cold water

For the filling:
3 large eggs, preferably organic
2 cups half-and-half
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
3 tablespoons chopped chives, optional
5 slices bacon, cooked until crisp in the microwave for 3 to 5 minutes
1 to 1¼ cups Gruyère or Swiss cheese, about 4 ounces


Preheat the oven to 400°F.

Place the flour, salt and sugar in the bowl of a food processor and pulse to combine. Cut the cold butter into a small dice and add to the flour. Pulse the machine until the mixture looks like large breadcrumbs. Add ¼ cup of the water and pulse again until small clumps form; if the mixture seems too dry, add more water a little at a time, pulsing after each addition. Dump the dough onto the counter and, using your hands, gather it all together, pressing it into a ball. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and let it rest for 30 minutes or roll it out right away. Using a rolling pin, on a lightly floured surface, roll the dough into a 12-to-14-inch circle and carefully place it in the tart pan. Using your fingers, gently press the dough into the corners of the pan lifting the edges so that the dough drops into the corners without tearing. Fold the edges over to make a lip and with your thumb, press through the dough on the sharp edge of the pan to remove any excess. You can also use the rolling pin to roll over the top of the pan to remove excess dough. Crimp the edges with your fingers, a fork or a knife. (You can make ahead and chill or freeze the dough to this stage.)

Line the dough with 2 pieces of aluminum foil (one on top of the other to make a double layer) or with a single sheet of parchment paper and pie weights. Bake until the edges are just starting to color, about 30 minutes. Remove the tart shell from the oven and let cool to room temperature.

To prepare the filling, whisk the eggs in a medium bowl. Then add the half-and-half, salt and pepper and whisk together until smooth. Add the chives. Cut or crumble the cooked bacon into small pieces and distribute evenly over the base of the tart shell. Scatter the cheese on top. Set the tart shell on a baking sheet. Pour half the custard mixture into the tart pan and set on a baking sheet in the oven before carefully pouring the remaining custard into the shell (to avoid spilling when bringing to the oven). Bake until the filling is puffy and just set in the center, about 30 minutes. Allow to cool for 30 minutes before removing from the tart pan and serving.

"I feel that if Jacques Pépin shows you how to make an omelet, the matter is pretty much settled. That’s God talking. "

(bright music) - Hi, I'm Jacques Pépin, and this is 'American Masters: At Home.'

(bright music) Today I'm going to show you how to make a quiche Lorraine, which is from the northeast part of France, very classic with the dough, with bacon, sometimes with ham and cheese, and so forth.

To start with the dough, I have a stick of butter here and it's cold, it's not frozen, but it's cold.

And I will cut it into pieces like this.

And I add flour.

The way you take your flour is important also, I always grab the flour and level it off like that.

And when you do it this way, three cups is a pound of flour.

You know, it's different than when you sift it.

I'm going to do it in the food processor, you know, which is easy.

So I have a cup and a half of flour.

So I'm putting in there.


My stick of butter.

A little dash of salt, a little dash of sugar, and we start this way by pulsating here.

Okay, pulse.

As you can see, it was done very, very fast.

Oh, maybe one more.

I still want the butter to be in tiny pieces here.

And the water here, I have about, cold water again, I have about a quarter of a cup of water.

We'll see if we need a little more, sometimes your flour is drier than some other times.

Just until it takes, maybe a little more.

Maybe a third of a cup.


I can see that it is still separated, but it's getting together, as you can see.

Now I can gather the dough together like this, as you can see.

Now, conventionally, in most recipes they tell you when you do a dough to let it rest for an hour or half an hour or so to relax the gluten, that is the protein in the flour, otherwise it's too elastic to roll.

Not if you do it this way, you can roll it right away, which is what I'm going to do.

When you do bread, for example, then you knead the dough a long time.

You get very elastic.

You have to let it rest.

But not here.

So, as you can see here, my dough.

I have a little bit of extra flour there, of course.

I'm gonna start rolling the dough this, with a rolling pin here.


You want to have it less than a quarter of an inch thick, certainly.

It rolled very well.

And I don't know if you can see here, there is all those yellow parts, which is the butter, you know, and that's important because when the butter is like this still in tiny pieces like that, it melts in the dough and create a bit of the effect that you get in a puffed pastry, that is flakiness.

So the dough is pretty rolled, pretty much here, and I use it right away.

The best way is to roll it back on your rolling pin and place it on your, I have a removable bottom here, type of a quiche pan.

You can do it with, or without the bottom.

I'm putting it here.


There is all right, a bit of extra dough.

Of course, and then you ease it in.

You want to ease it in.


In that case here we are going to pre-cook the dough.

Sometimes you do it, sometimes you don't.

It's a little more delicate when you do it.

And then now to get a thicker edge, I will bring a little bit of the dough inside like this, with my thumb and cut it like this.


Okay, so I have brought it all over, as you can see, there is a bit less dough here, so I put a little more here and then now I can roll it this way, this way, to remove a little bit of extra dough that I had, I can cook it next to it, to do a little tart.

And now with this, I bring that this way to do a nice border.

So this is a classic way of doing the dough, whether it's for a quiche, or an apple tart, or any other type of a dough, or apple pie.

So I could leave the edge this way.

I could press it with my finger this way to do an edge like this, which is fine too.

I have that little contraption here to do an edge.

If you want this way, press it like this.

It's a little different.

Or you can leave it as is, it's perfectly fine.

Now, if you want to bake it this way, that is pre-bake it, we usually put a piece of paper in it and, and some weights, like rice or something like this.

With the aluminum foil, you don't really have to, it's a bit thicker.

So I'm going to fold it this way in four.

And then you do a, you know, a kind of a triangle like this, and you measure from the center here and the way it goes up to cut this here, to do a round shape.

And I want to put it in there now.

Press it a little bit in there so that it hold the dough in place when it's cooking.

Sometimes I even put two, like this, to make it a bit thicker.

Now, as I said, like my mother would do a quiche Lorraine like that, she never pre-cooked the dough, just put it and it's perfectly fine.

Perfectly fine.

A bit less delicate maybe than this.

And that goes into the oven.

We're to cook that for 30 minutes to start with at 400 degrees.

And the inside of the dough, we have bacon, grated Swiss cheese.

Usually I do the bacon this way, I put it on the, on napkin like this, paper napkin and I put it in the microwave oven.

Depend on your microwave oven, I'll start with three minutes.

I'm going to have three eggs for that.

And I have, we used to break the egg, like this.

You know, as I said, you always break it on something flat like this instead of something like that, so you don't bring the shell inside.

But when I was an apprentice, we used to put the eggs together and clean the inside with our finger, we didn't lose anything.

Okay, about half a teaspoon of salt about the same thing of pepper, and I'm going to beat that up.

Remember my quiche here is about nine and a half, nine, nine and a half in diameter.

So, you know, you want to beat your egg so you don't have any long string of white coming out.

And then I'm putting half and half here.

Maybe I'll put two cups.

I'll see, I may have a bit too much here.

Okay, so that's the base.

Maybe I put a bit of chives in theres just for color.

My bacon here, I put it for three minutes and I put it on another minute after.

It's nice and crisp, as you can see, and the fat, most of the fat is absorb in the paper.

So cutting into pieces like this.

That's it.

And there is my dough, the dough, and I've been cooking for 30 minutes.

I remove, and as you can see the dough now shrank a little bit, but it's partially cooked.

Sometimes people put it back in the oven to brown the center.

So here, I'm going to have my bacon, Swiss cheese, a cup will be enough.

And then my liquid in there.

I like to put some of it when it's in the oven because I'm afraid, I put it half way like this, I put it into the oven and I pour it in the oven.

If I put it too full there, I may have a mistake.


Here is the quiche out of the oven.

As you can see, you shake it a little bit, it's holding.

It's cooked.

It's puffy.

It's going to go down slightly when it's cooled off and then you can lift it up out of the thing and cut it.

Okay, now I'm ready to serve my quiche, it's still hot, but it's not too hot.

What you want to do is to maybe bring that up under this, to get that thing out.

Wow, still hot.

And then I can cut it, Right, that would be eight for me, but oh, six.



It's just the way my mother used to do, the quiche Lorraine in the style of Lyon.

Happy cooking.

(bright music) Thank you for joining me.

For more, subscribe to this channel, or watch here.

Thank you.

And happy cooking.

(bright music)


PBS is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization.