Joy the Baker

Gluten-Free Asparagus Quiche

March 20, 2012

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I ride my bike like a stone-cold maniac.  I tear through the streets, whip around corners, weave through cars, and am otherwise reckless.  If I look cocky on my bike… that’s because I’m usually listening to Jay-Z rap me things about being super rich and super awesome… and it translates into my pedal.  There comes a time in every bike ride when I have a decision to make.  I’m probably tired.  I’m probably thirsty.  I’m definitely wanting french fries and/or wine.  The decision is this:  up the hill?  or around the hill?

Take the hill or glide the easy way home?

I always take the hill.  It’s just a thing.  I can’t let myself slide home, not sweaty, and not out of breath.  Always take the hill.

To be clear… I’m not friends with the hill.  I hate the hill.  The hill is totally not cool.  But!  I always have to tackle that thing.

I think I try to live my whole life by always taking the challenge.  It’s hard, right?  It feels totally nerve-wracking.  It’s all kicking and screaming. Sometimes taking the challenge happens in front of a whole crowd of happy strangers.  Sometimes it’s just you, alone in the kitchen, putting together a quiche with ingredients you’ve never used before.  Whichever way it happens… always take the dang hill.  It takes your breath away, in the best way possible.

As you know, I’m currently taking on the awesome challenge of a national book tour for the Joy the Baker Cookbook.  No biggie…. um, total biggie!  These past weeks have been the most nerve-wracking, exhilarating, and exciting times in my life.  Truly.  Meeting you… meeting YOU has been 100% incredible.  More amazing than I ever could have imagined.

I want you to see this incredible journey!  I’ve been up and down the west coast, and I made a very special stop at the French Laundry in Yountville, California.  I made friends with their gardener,  I chef-ed it up in their test kitchen, and I made a quiche using the new gluten-free flour called Cup4Cup.  It’s awesome.

The book tour journey  has blown my mind! And!! It’s not over!  I’m so excited to see you in the midwest and east coast in the coming weeks.

Peep the video!  You’re in it!  It’s the real deal.

Thank you Chef Keller, Mimi, Lena, Tucker, Tracy, and of course… Michael.

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Because I was so inspired by this last week of book touring, I came home for a few days and wanted to give Cup4Cup gluten-free flour a try in my own kitchen.  I’m totally into it!  This is not a sponsored post.  This is me taking on the challenge of gluten-free baking, and being totally amazed by how easy it was.  I’m excited and I want to share… plain and simple.

Bike riding, book touring, or baking… always take the hill!

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We’re here because we’re making a quiche.

Let’s get down to it!

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Gluten-free flour is whisked with sugar, salt, and cold cold butter, too!

Shaggy is good when it comes to pie dough.

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I added an egg yolk to the cold buttermilk for this crust.  The yolk helps the whole crust bind like a champ.

… we should always and forever be binding like champs.

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Give this dough a good sprinkling of flour, and we’re in business. The business of pie dough… clearly.

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Any cracks in the crust can easily be mended by pressing the area together with fingers.

It’s not heart surgery.  Just get in there and mend.

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So… even the dough scraps taste good to snack on.

Unless you’re the kind of person that totally freaks out at consuming raw eggs… then don’t snack.  And don’t tell anyone that I snacked either.  Cool?

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The quiche filling is simple.

Asparagus to start.  Small rounds are sauteed in just a bit of butter, and treated with salt and pepper.

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Green onions… because I like to mimic the shape of the asparagus rounds. This quiche totally has a theme.  Round.

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Eggs, milk, and cream.  If you’re a vegan this is probably really gross.

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Sharp cheddar cheese.

Gruyere is also a dream come true.

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Anticipation feels good.

Bake already!

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Look how beautifully golden and flaky this crust is.  Can you even believe it’s gluten-free?  I can’t.  I totally can’t.  It’s everything I want it to be!

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I love how creamy and fluffy this quiche is.  It’s also studded with green Spring vegetables… and I’m just smitten.  The crust holds its shape and maintains its alluringly crisp texture.  I genuinely can’t tell that it’s gluten-free.  Cup4Cup made the challenge of gluten-free baking a total breeze in this recipe.  I don’t have a lot of gluten-free baking experience, an this  It’s a win.

Oh.. also, kitten… just so you know:  just because you’re sitting close to it, does not mean it’s yours.  K?

Gluten-Free Asparagus Quiche

makes one 9-inch quiche

Print this Recipe!

For the Crust:

1 1/2 cups Cup4Cup all-purpose gluten-free flour

1 teaspoon granulated sugar

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup (1 stick) cold unsalted butter, cut into cubes

1 large egg yolk

1/4 cup buttermilk

For the Filling:

1 1/2 cups diced asparagus

1/2 cup sliced green onions

1/2 tablespoon unsalted butter

salt and pepper to taste

6 large eggs

1 cup milk (I used 2 percent)

1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons heavy cream

pinch of salt and coarse ground pepper

1 cup grated sharp cheddar cheese or Gruyere cheese

To Make the Crust:

In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, and salt.  Add cold, cubed butter and, using your fingers, work the butter into the flour mixture.  Quickly break the butter down into the flour mixture, some butter pieces will be the size of oat flakes, some will be the size of peas. In a small bowl, stir together the egg yolk and buttermilk.   Create a well in the butter and flour mixture and pour in the liquid mixture.  Use a fork to bring to dough together.  Try to moisten all of the flour bits.  On a lightly floured work surface, dump out the dough mixture.  It will be moist and shaggy.  Sprinkle generously with flour.  That’s perfect.  Shape dough into a disk and wrap in plastic wrap.  Allow dough to rest in the fridge while you assemble the filling.  Dough is easiest to roll out when it’s cold and rested.

When you’re ready to roll out the crust, on a well-floured work surface, gently roll out the pie crust into about an 11-inch circle.  Press together any spots that might tear.  Carefully lift down and place into the 9-inch pie plate.  Use a pairing knife to trim the edges of pie dough, leaving about 1/2 inch extra dough overhang.  Fold the excess dough under and crimp with fingers.

To Make the Filling:

Place a rack in the center of the oven and preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

In a medium saucepan, over medium heat, melt butter.  Add the sliced vegetables and saute until bright green and slightly tender, about 4 minutes.  Season with a bit of salt and pepper, remove from heat, and set aside.

In a large bowl, whisk together eggs, milk, heavy cream, and a bit of salt and pepper.  Whisk until well blended.

Add the cooked vegetables to the unbaked pie crust.  Sprinkle half of the cheese over the vegetables.  Pour egg mixture over vegetables and top with more cheese.

Carefully place quiche in oven and bake for 45-55 minutes, or until quiche puffs up and does not have a loose giggle when shaken lightly.

Remove from the oven and allow to cool for at least an hour.  Serve warm or cool.  Quiche will last, well wrapped in the refrigerator, for up to three days. 


243 Comments Add A Comment

  • Although I can happily eat all kinds of flour and wheat, one of my best friends is a coeliac so having a recipe like this up my sleeve is idea – plus anything with asparagus in gets my vote!

  • A totally unexpected, delightful melange.

    That’s what I’d call this mash-up of your funky groove with that classy French stuff. :)

  • When asparagus gets in season here I am totally gonna make this quiche! Only a gluten full and dairy free version… One question though – what the hell is sharp cheddar?! Is it like mature cheddar? Like strongly flavoured? I’m guessing it is I just wondered if it was some different kind of cheddar…

  • Joy, you’re so lovely and you sound just like Cameron Diaz! I never imagined your voice to sound like that! Please let your book tour take you overseas to Ireland? Or the UAE? I live between both, and I will totally be wherever you are xx

  • But it’s fantastic!!! I write you from Italy, wow I love your blog!!

  • Glad you are having an awesome week! The French Laundry garden is just amazing to look at. Hopefully one day I’ll set foot in that restaurant.
    I am currently abroad so when I heard that you are doing the tour I was really sad that I don’t get to meet you in person. But you and Tracy are keeping me company in Prague via podcast. Imagine a street car full of serious Czech people and I burst out laughing from something you guy are talking about. Yeah..people don’t really smile here or laugh.
    Keep this awesome week going! Cheers!

  • Even when I was a strict vegan, eggs, milk and cream were never gross. They are just ingredients. Any ingredient, if properly harnessed, can become wonderful IMO. Especially those three!

    And you, just oh-so-causally hanging out with the gardener from the French Laundry??!! It’s on my life’s bucket list of must-eat’s and must-do’s. It has been for quite some time. This decade I think I need to get serious about getting in. I should just have you put a good word in since you are clearly in the know!!

  • This is so inspiring. I’m going to make a quiche and then bring my bike out for a ride !

  • I’ve read your blog for a long time, but have never commented. In fact, I can think of very few times when I’ve commented on any blog. But yeesh, seeing that video, I just had to say how incredibly moving it is to see something this awesome happen in your life. I don’t know if it’s just a celebration of joy that we can share just in the fact that we’re all a part of humanity, or if it’s because you somehow feel a bit like family and a lot like a friend as a result of your blog, but in any case, I’m thrilled for you that you’ve had this intense – both in nerve-conquering and in surprise-delight – experience!

  • I should tell you something. A blog-fession. I super cried while watching this video. Like… for real times. I am so excited to meet you that if I cry just… like don’t be surprised. I’m apologizing beforehand. I’m sorry haha. but we’ll hug it out. so also prepare for that.

    Also, I’m in LOVE with your blazer! I think I could use a business lady blazer in my life.

  • My GF friends are going to be impressed when I branch out and start making them this quiche in addition to my usual frittata offering. :)

  • Joy! I love the video!!! What an amazing trip and experience. Again, I am beyond thrilled for you. This couldn’t happen to a better person. You’re a gem! I’m so glad we connected again after so long. Seeing you was a major highlight!!! I hope we can really catch up again soon when you come back to Seattle again!! Congrats on everything!!

  • Wow, Joy! I totally cried while watching that video, what an amazing (and well deserved) experience you’re having. I’m not gluten free, but I have lots of friends who are, so I’ll have to try to get my hands on some of that Cup4Cup flour, it looks amazing!

  • Quiche is one of my favorite lunches! I usually cheat and use store-bought crust dough. I’ll have to try this!

  • Thanks for the step-by-step instructions. I love asparagus in anything! Ah biking uphill is my favorite, I go faster uphill than I go down… I’m scared to death of downhills and can’t ever get over it.

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