Friday, October 31, 2014

BACON CHEESECAKE CASSEROLE for a CROWD (Quiche Lorraine) - 52 Church PotLuck Breakfast

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Lately I have been all about feeding a crowd.  Which makes this a timely post for all the overnight guests you may have for the upcoming holiday seasons.  I can get 20 servings from a single 9X13 Casserole Dish from this recipe.  The pan is cut in half the long way, then cut into 1 inch bars making a serving 1 X 4-1/2.

You can easily do all the prep work (Cook the bacon, Mix the eggs and 1/2&1/2, make and par-bake the crust) the day before.  Then with just a few minutes work plus baking time you can serve this up warm.

BUT, even better you can just bake the whole thing the day before and offer these chilled... A Quiche tastes great chilled, room temp and warm.

This recipe is a classic Quiche Lorraine turned into a casserole.  OOZing with Swiss Cheese, LOADED (don;t be stingy) with BACON and the rich Egg Custard on a pie crust.

Add a plate of fruit and maybe a mini-muffin or two and your guests will think you were up all night baking!

Easy Fast Filling Impressive... Great for a Catering job, a BIG Breakfast or any Pass a Plate PotLuck Occasion!

OK... Here's what I did...

For a Crowd (Shhh... It's a Quiche Lorraine)

  • 1 - Scratch Made Pie Crust Recipe (See Recipe Below)
  • 1 Pound Thick Slice Bacon, sliced into 1 inch pieces and fried
  • 4 Cups (2 - 8 Ounce Bricks) Gruyere Cheese (buy the brick cheese and fresh grate)
  • 4 Cups Half and Half
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 10 Large Eggs, slightly beaten
Cooking Directions
  1. Prepare your ingredients, Par-Bake your pie shell (400 degrees for about 8 -10 minutes until it just starts to brown. This is important to avoid a soggy crust). Fry the bacon (easier to fry after you slice the raw bacon into pieces). In a large bowl, break all the eggs and whip slightly. Grate the cheese.
  2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  3. Add the Half and Half and salt to the beaten eggs and whip until smooth and evenly colored, thoroughly mixed.
  4. Line the bottom of each pie shell with the grated cheese, evenly divided.
  5. Top this cheese with the bacon, again evenly divided.
  6. Add the milky egg mix on top of the cheesy bacon to the top of the pie shell.
  7. Move to the oven and bake for 30 to 40 minutes until the top just starts to brown.
  8. Quiche can be served warm (allow it to rest for 30 minutes before slicing), room temperature (perfect for a brunch buffet) or chilled from the fridge.
  9. If you want to freeze one and serve one, Freezing instructions... Chill for several hours in the refrigerator. Wrap TIGHTLY with cling wrap, then with aluminum foil. Date and freeze for no more than 60 days. When reheating, thaw first, then reheat in the oven, NEVER the microwave (or crust will get soggy). 450 for 20-30 minutes.
  10. And tell the quiche-phobic that you are serving BACON CHEESECAKE and ENJOY!
Secrets to a Scratch  
PERFECT PIE CRUST for a Casserole Dish 

  • MAKES TWO PIE CRUSTS or ONE Crust for ONE 9X13 Casserole Dish...
  • 1-1/4 Cup All Purpose Flour
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1/2 Cup (1 Stick) Unsalted COLD Butter
  • 5 TBS COLD (iced) water
  • Non-stick spray (Like Pam)
Cooking Directions
  1. Add the flour, salt and sugar to the bowl of a food processor and process to mix.
  2. Prepare the next items, butter should be cold (prefer from freezer) and water in a cup with a couple of ice cubes to keep it cold, cold, cold.
  3. With the machine running, add butter 1 TBS at a time, count to three and add the next TBS of butter. Continue to process until dough resembles small pebbles like wet sand, only 5-10 seconds.
  4. With the machine still running, add the COLD COLD Water one TBS at a time. In just a few seconds a dough ball will begin to form. Stop the processor now.
  5. Prepare your "Rolling area", a place to form the flat circle of crust. This si simple, just a piece of cling wrap (Saran Wrap) laid out flat on a counter. It is important that the wrap be at least 4 inches wider than the pie plate. use an extra overlapping piece of wrap if needed. Then dump the dough ball and all crumbs from the processor onto the center of the cling wrap.
  6. Press the ball and crumbs together and form a flat ball. Press the ball and begin to flatten out into a circle. Add a top layer of cling wrap on top of the now flattened ball. Use a roller and begin rolling the dough into a flat circle or a large 10X14 rectangle. As the dough is flattened it may begin to separate. Just add some of the edges to cover the breaks and continue to roll out. Roll until the dough circle is 2 inches beyond the edge of the pie plate or an inch larger all around the casserole pan. Gently but firmly roll until crust is even thickness.
  7. Remove top layer of cling wrap and place pie plate or casserole pan on center of the dough circle or rectangle.
  8. OK.... Here's the tricky part (first couple of times, once you get used to it, it becomes second nature easy)... lift each corner of the bottom cling wrap up to break the seal on the counter top. Now reach your hand under the cling wrap to the center of the pie plate (that is still resting on the center of the crust). Put your other hand on the top (the bottom) of the plate Lift up and QUICKLY flip everything so the pie plate or dish is now on the bottom, the dough is centered on the plate or dish and beginning to settle. There will be ripples of dough, but everything should be on the plate with some hangover all the way around.
  9. Trim the edges.  For the Casserole, just be sure the bottom is covered. trim anything climbing the sides.  For the pie plates... With your thumbs, push the dough 1/8-inch above the edge of the mold, to make an even, rounded rim of dough around the inside circumference of the mold. You can then press a decorative edge around the rim of the pastry with the dull edge of a knife. Prick the bottom of the pastry with a fork at 1/2-inch intervals to prevent air bubbles from forming as you par-bake the crust.
  10. To par-bake, bake crust in a preheated 400 degree oven for 9-10 minutes, until crust just starts to darken in color. If you are going to bake the finished pie (Fruit pies, quiches, etc. you are ready to move on to the next step. If you are making a cold pie (like banana cream:, bake for an additional 5 minutes.
  11. Fill and bake (or chill) as directed for the pie of your choice! And when done... ENJOY!


This simple recipe has been added to my growing list of "52 Breakfast Ideas!"

It's the most important meal of the day.  From fancy to simple, there are always ways to dress up a breakfast dish.  These are the meals that make Bed and Breakfast Inns legendary (and usually easier than you think).

Here's your chance to make your guests Ooh and Aah!

This recipe has been added to my growing list of "52 Church PotLuck Dishes"!

A list of something NEW worthy of being shown off at a neighborhood BYODish (Bring Your Own Dish) Party, a Family special occasion dinner, Any Big Holiday Gathering or of course that glorious day when you bring a dish to share with your Church family...

Ages ago, literally almost a half century ago I was listening to our pastor talking about a PotLuck Dinner. It happened to be scheduled around a church work day when we were expected to weed, polish and do general cleaning and maintenance around the church (you know, back in the day when there were no no-wax floors and church pews smelled of Old English furniture polish). I am of course paraphrasing, but as I recall the pastor said,

"A potluck, like a church requires work. At a potluck everyone is expected to contribute.. At a church no one should come empty handed and no one should leave unfed".
I will confess that in my youth I brought more store bought plastic spoons and forks than I ever brought covered dishes and crock pots of fresh made love and caring delights. But now that I have become a hobbyist cook, I occasionally am reminded of those days and people from my youth. I reminded and I do wish that I could drop a dish of some new creation on those old tables at my fondly remembered Liberty Baptist Church.  Tables covered with newspapers and loaded with God's bounty prepared with love and caring... Enjoy


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