The subtle, savory-sweet flavor of leeks is an excellent complement to other vegetables in soups, stews, salads and stir-fries. Classic combinations include leeks with potatoes (as in the chilled soup vichyssoise or in potato-leek salad) and leeks with kale. The traditional Scottish soup cock-a-leekie includes leeks, chicken, herbs and sometimes prunes. Leeks also are delicious sautéed gently in butter, poached and topped with a light cream sauce or wrapped in foil and roasted in the oven or on the grill. Perhaps leek quiche is less well known next to those well established examples, but we think you’ll find a lot to like.
When preparing leeks, be sure to rinse away any excess soil or sand and trim off the thinnest part of the top leafy green portion. Slice the tender stem vertically or horizontally and use raw or cooked.
4 large eggs
1/2 cup half-and-half
1 cup cream
1/2 pound Swiss or Gruyere cheese, grated
1/4 tsp salt
4 slices bacon (optional)
1/4 cup butter
2 large leeks, thinly sliced (about 2 cups)
1/2 tsp marjoram
1 tsp fresh parsley, chopped
1 9-inch unbaked pastry shell
Beat eggs with cream and half-and-half. Stir in cheese and salt, then set aside. If using bacon, fry until crisp, then crumble and set aside. Drain grease, then melt butter in the same skillet. Add leeks and sauté until golden brown. Remove from heat and add marjoram, parsley and bacon. Combine with egg mixture and pour into pastry shell. Bake at 400 degrees for about 40 minutes, or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean. Serves 6.
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