CHEVRE-FRAIS QUICHE (FRESH GOAT-CHEESE PIE)
Unfilled, 9-inch quiche crust (consult a general- purpose cookbook for a recipe) 6 slices bacon 6 to 8 shallots, peeled and thinly sliced 11 to 12 oz. fresh garlic, pepper, or herb- flavored goat cheese, room temperature (see note) 4 eggs 2 cups half-and-half, or 4 oz. fresh plain goat cheese blended with 1 1/2 cups milk 1 tablespoon flour 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg 1/4 teaspoon salt 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
In a skillet over medium heat, fry bacon until crisp. Remove from skillet and drain on paper towels. Drain and reserve bacon fat. Crumble bacon and set aside.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
Return 1 tablespoon bacon fat to skillet. Add shallots and saute over medium heat until translucent. Remove from skillet and drain on paper towel.
Sprinkle bacon and shallots over bottom of crust. Using the back of a spoon, pat cheese over bacon and shallots as evenly as possible. If using firmer or imported cheese, cut in thin slices and arrange to cover bottom evenly.
In bowl or in food processor, mix eggs, half-and-half (or milk-cheese mixture), flour, nutmeg, salt, and peppers until well blended. Carefully pour over cheese in crust.
Place quiche on lowest rack in oven and bake at 400 degrees 15 minutes. Reduce heat to 325 degrees and bake about 35 to 40 minutes longer, until knife inserted in center comes out clean.
Remove from oven. Place on rack and cool 15 minutes before serving. Serves 6.
Note: Plain goat cheese can be used; add herbs of your choice along with freshly ground black pepper.