Quiche With Crispy Back Bacon And Caramelised Onions

By Sophie Dahl

The pastry of this lovely quiche comes courtesy of Callie Hope-Moreley, and it is a proper French pâte à pâte, (french butter pastry), except it’s made with spelt flour.

Photography by Jan Baldwin

Oh, for a quiche that puffs up and trembles when it comes out of the oven. I hate those solid lumps of pastry, with solid lumps of egg. I want quivering Cartland heroines in my quiche. As long as they are not pink. I feel like the bacon keeps this sturdy.

  • Serves: 4-6
  • Preparation time: 30 minutes
  • Cooking time: 30 minutes


For the pastry

  • 275g white spelt flour or plain white flour
  • ½ tsp of salt
  • 200g butter
  • 2 eggs, separated
  • 3 tbsp of water

For the filling

  • A glug of olive oil
  • 1 large onion, peeled and finely chopped
  • 75g butter
  • 75g white spelt flour
  • 570ml semi skimmed milk
  • 110g grated Cheddar cheese
  • 225g back bacon, grilled and crispy
  • A pinch of mustard powder
  • Salt and pepper


  1. Sieve the flour and salt into a food-processor bowl. Cut the butter into small cubes and add it to the flour. Using the pastry blade, whiz up until it resembles fine breadcrumbs. Keeping it on, add the egg yolks and a few spoons of water to mix the dough.
  2. Take out the dough and lightly knead into a ball. Wrap in clingfilm and place in the fridge for about half an hour. Preheat the oven to 200°C/Gas mark 6.
  3. Grease a deep 28 centimetre flan dish and roll out the pastry thinly. Line the dish with the pastry, removing any air pockets. Prick the base with a fork and bake blind for 20 minutes.
  4. Whilst the flan base is baking, caramelize the onion. In a heavy bottomed pan, heat a glug of olive oil and add the onion, stirring and stirring and making sure it is covered in the oil. You want to do this on a low heat as the goal is for the onion to become golden not charred. A heat diffuser can help. This will also take about 20 minutes.
  5. Remove the flan and keep to the side. Onion the same. Turn the oven up to 230°C/Gas mark 8.
  6. In a saucepan, melt the butter and add the flour to make a roux. Add the milk, bit by bit, stirring slowly and continuously until thick and just simmering. Simmer for a few minutes, then add the cheese and stir until melted. Take off the heat and add the bacon, a pinch of mustard powder, salt and pepper and the caramelized onion.
  7. In a separate bowl, mix the egg whites until they form stiff peaks, and gently fold them into the lovely roux. Pour it all in to the pastry case and bake for 25 to 30 minutes. Serve immediately.