Spring has sprung and the fresh vegetable section of your local market is abundant with the first vegetable of the season, asparagus. Bright, beautiful green, pencil thin stalks of asparagus are tempting your palate.
There are so many delicious ways to prepare that bunch of Asparagus you just had to buy, but what should you do? Steam it, wrapped in prosciutto and bake it, hmm, maybe you’re thinking about brunch. In that case, a savory, custardy quiche studded with asparagus spears and lemon sounds perfect. It can be made ahead of time and served either warm or at room temperature and makes great leftovers.
Lemon and Asparagus Quiche is a perfect dish to serve at a springtime wedding shower, baby shower, Easter Brunch, or Sunday brunch with friends.
Lemon Asparagus Quiche Recipe
Homemade or Store-Bought Frozen Pie Crust for two-9inch pie pans like these.
½ pound asparagus, trimmed
1½ teaspoons unsalted butter
2 small shallots, finely minced
Fine sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
Zest from 1 lemon, preferably organic
2 large eggs
½ cup heavy cream
⅓ cup sour cream
¼ cup minced mixed fresh herbs
2 tablespoons finely grated Parmesan, optional
Olive oil, for brushing
*Because the filling is wet, it’s important to blind bake the crust so you don’t end up with a soggy bottom.
Fit pie dough into two-9 inch pie pans. Fold edges of dough under and crimp as desired. Wrap in plastic; freeze at least 30 minutes and up to 3 days. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Line crust with parchment, then fill with dried beans or pie weights if you have them. Bake 20 minutes with a baking sheet like this on rack below; remove paper and beans. Let cool.
Reduce oven to 375 degrees.
Bring large skillet of salted water to a boil. Drop in asparagus and blanch for 3 minutes – or 90 seconds if you’ve got pencil asparagus (it shouldn’t be completely cooked). Drain in a colander, run under cold water and pat dry.
Cut off asparagus tips to make them about 3 inches long. If your asparagus is thick, slice lengthwise in half. Cut remaining stalks on the bias into slices about ¼ to ½ inch wide. Wipe out the skillet.
Put skillet over medium heat and add butter. When it’s melted, toss in shallots and cook, stirring, just until softened, about 3 minutes. Season with salt and pepper and scrape into the crust, spreading them evenly. Add lemon zest and sliced asparagus stalks.
Whisk eggs, cream, sour cream and herbs together in a bowl just until blended. Season with salt (about ¼ teaspoon) and pepper, then pour into prepared crust. Arrange asparagus tips (cut side down if you’ve halved them) in any way you like on top of the filling.
Bake quiche for 25-30 minutes, sprinkling on parmesan cheese, if using, after quiche has been in the oven for 20 minutes. The quiche is done when the custard is set — a tester will come out clean — and puffed. Transfer to a rack and, if you like, brush olive oil over the top, using only enough to give it a gloss.
Serve quiche when it’s just warm or has come to room temperature.
Makes 2 quiche.
*Thank you to Gretchen McKay/The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette for this recipe.