A quiche is basically a frittata poured into a pastry shell. And a frittata is something like a big baked omelet. Quiche, then, is a savory custard in a shell with ingredients such as meats, cheese, herbs, and vegetables.
Origin of the Word Quiche
The word quiche is French, but the dish itself originated in Lothringen, in Western Germany, known by the French as Lorraine. The term quiche is French for the German küche, which was a diminutive form of kuchen, meaning cake.
Why Did ‘Real Men’ Stop Eating Quiche?
There is nothing decidedly feminine about quiche. For example, the most popular quiche dish ever is Quiche Lorraine, which features bacon. In other words, it’s bacon and eggs in a pie shell. Other ingredients besides bacon are often added, of course, and none of these are particularly emasculating, either. Vegetarian versions of quiche abound, and this has often been a cause for rejection among males.
Starting around 1982, the expression “Real me don’t eat quiche,” became somewhat popular, and indeed, many men started refusing to eat quiche. Quiche had been popular during the 1970’s, but during the 1980’s quiche consumption plummeted.
Who Coined the Phrase Real Men Don’t Eat Quiche?
The origin of this phrase was the title of a book. In 1982, humorist and screen writer wrote Real Men Don’t Eat Quiche. The title, and the content, was satirical. The ‘real men’ in the book sat around eating steak, wore flannel shirts, and never shared their feelings. The “Quiche-eaters” or wimps, otherwise known as Sensitive New Age Guys, not only made and ate quiche, but also did the dishes, and of course, supported the feminist movements. The book was simply a satirical examination of masculine stereotypes. The subtitle was A Guidebook to All that is Truly Masculine However, proving the stereotypes, many men failed to see the satire. The phrase took on its own life, and most of the people who repeated it had never read nor even heard of the book. The book had started out as facetious piece published by Bruce Feirstein in Playboy magazine:
American men are all mixed up today…There was a time when this was a nation of Ernest Hemingways, real men. The kind of men who could defoliate an entire forest to make a breakfast fire — and then wipe out an endangered species while hunting for lunch. But not any more. We’ve become a nation of wimps. Pansies. Alan Alda types who cook and clean and ‘relate’ to their wives. Phil Donahue clones who are ‘sensitive’ and ‘vulnerable’ and understanding of their children. And where’s it gotten us? I’ll tell you where. The Japanese make better cars. The Israelis better soldiers. And the rest of the world is using our embassies for target practice. – Bruce Feirstein
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