A great entertaining recipe, the classic quiche Lorraine has been given a seasonal update with leeks and crumbled chèvre.
Leek & Goat Cheese Quiche
As the calendar changes from February to March, I can’t help but notice the excitement buzzing all around me: gorgeous wild flowers are taking over fields off the scenic country backroads, heavy winter coats and down comforters are being put into the back of the closet until late fall when temperatures begin to dip below 40º. In the kitchen, hearty stews and warming winter soups are being pushed aside in favor of lighter dishes loaded with spring vegetables.
To celebrate the departure of winter and the (eventual) arrival of spring, I decided to put a seasonal twist on the classic quiche. While considered to be a French dish, the use of custard (eggs and cream or milk) actually dates as far back as 13th century Italy — a well-made quiche can be an incredibly versatile recipe that comes in handy for a bevy of occasions. Often people consider a quiche to be a brunch or breakfast recipe, I prefer to serve it as an appetizer for a dinner party.
Inspired by a winter photography challenge hosted by Kimberly from The Little Plantation, I opted to swap out bacon and Swiss cheese for in-season leeks (swapped for onions), delicate shallots (which I used in place of garlic) and crumbled goat cheese. Not one to typically jump the gun or anything, but I think this vegetarian quiche might have just become my new go-to springtime quiche to make for dinner parties and potlucks.
An invaluable trick I learned from my mother-in-law is to keep things as simple as possible cooking-wise. A delicious quiche or two (which can be made ahead, served at room temperature or warm from the oven), plus an epic charcuterie board are both simple things that will leave you with more time to focus on fine-tuning last minute details you might have overlooked.
If you’re in a hurry, you can use a frozen pie crust or make a batch of my basic pie crust (I always make extra so I have a disc or two of frozen pie dough in the freezr ready to be used.)
LEEK GOAT CHEESE QUICHE
- 2 medium leeks, washed thoroughly and cut into 1/2-inch dice (about 2 cups)
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 2 large eggs, at room temperature
- 2 large egg yolks, at room temperature
- 3/4 cup whole milk
- 3/4 cup heavy cream
- 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground pepper
- pinch fresh grated nutmeg
- 4 ounces mild goat cheese broken into 1/2-inch pieces
- 1 9- inch partially baked pie shell (warm), baked until light golden brown
How to cook LEEK GOAT CHEESE QUICHE
- Adjust oven rack to center position and heat oven to 375) degrees. Sauté white parts of the leeks in butter over medium heat until soft, 5–7 minutes. Meanwhile in a bowl, whisk all remaining ingredients except goat cheese in medium bowl.
- Spread the goat cheese and leeks evenly over bottom of warm pie shell, pour in custard mixture to 1/2-inch below rim of crust. Bake until lightly golden brown and a knife blade inserted about one inch from the edge comes out clean, and center feels set but soft but somewhat stable, 30 to 35 minutes. Transfer quiche to rack to cool. Serve warm or at room temperature.