Kale and Leek Quiche

Quiche is something that seems way fancier than the effort involved in preparing it.  I did cheat with this one and get a prepared pie crust, but even with making homemade pie crust, quiche provides a lot of gratification for a little effort. 

This recipe is great as dinner, maybe with a simple salad and a glass of wine or for an elegant brunch.  If you can't get a hold of leeks and kale, use onions and spinach.  Throw in a little bacon or swiss cheese.  Quiche are one of those dishes that allow for a million variations and they're all delicious.
I really like leeks.  They have an interesting and subtle flavor.  Plus for whatever reason they always make me think of French food, and it is hard to beat French food in quality and sophistication.  Leeks are a little annoying though because they grow best in sandy soil so they can be hard to get totally clean.  I find it easiest to slice them in half lengthwise and then wash them under cold water, pulling the layers apart to get them really clean.
I've made quiche where I didn't cook the vegetables before hand.  If you're cooking something tough (like kale) it is probably good to sauté it a bit first.  But with carrots, for example, I'd just slice them thinly and throw them in.
So I admit, I cheated a little bit with the cheese.  I didn't grate it I just sliced it up.  It had a little less even distribution than if I had actually bothered to get out the grater, but the difference was pretty minimal and this way I didn't have to wash the cheese grater.  Plus the cheese grater is dangerous.  I always grate my fingers so I try to avoid it.
Quiche is a great way to cook vegetables.  I love any recipe that is so versatile, easy, elegant, and most importantly delicious!

Kale and Leek Quiche

two large leeks
2 cups chopped kale
2 tbsp olive oil
5 eggs
1/3 cup milk
1/2 cup grated sharp cheddar cheese
salt and pepper
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
2 tsp prepared mustard
9-inch pie crust

1. Rinse leeks well and slice. Sauté leeks over medium heat with the olive oil until soft, about 3 minutes.
2.  Add kale and sauté until wilted, about 2-3 minutes more.  Allow to cool slightly.
3. Whisk eggs, milk and spices.  Mix in cheese.
4. Place kale and leeks in pie crust.  Pour egg mixture over.
5. Bake in a 375 degree oven for 35 to 45 minutes.

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