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Ham and Leek Quiche

All types of vegetables and cheeses can be combined and used in the quiche filling. It is a great way to use up leftovers. 

Ingredients:

  • 1 batch basic quiche and tart dough (see related recipe at left) 
  • 1 Tbs. unsalted butter 
  • 3 cups thinly sliced leeks 
  • Kosher salt, to taste, plus 1/2 tsp.
  • Freshly ground pepper, to taste 
  • 1 cup diced smoked ham 
  • 3 eggs 
  • 1 1/2 cups heavy cream 
  • Small pinch of freshly grated nutmeg 
  • 1/4 cup finely shredded Gruyère cheese 

Directions:

Prepare and refrigerate the pastry dough as directed. On a lightly floured work surface, roll out the dough into a 12-inch round about 1/8 inch thick, lightly dust it with flour, fold it in half, transfer it to a 9-inch pie dish and unfold it in the middle of the pan.

To prepare a partially baked pie crust, preheat an oven to 400°F. Line a chilled pie crust with a piece of aluminum foil. Fill the foil-lined crust with ceramic pie weights, dried beans or uncooked rice. Bake the lined crust until it dries out, about 15 minutes. Carefully remove the weights and foil by gathering up the edges of the foil and pulling toward the center, up and out. Continue to bake until the crust is very lightly golden on the edges and dry looking on the bottom, about 5 minutes longer. Transfer the crust to a wire rack to cool in the pan. Lower the oven temperature to 350°F.

In a large sauté pan, melt the butter over medium-high heat until it turns golden. Add the leeks and sauté until wilted but still bright green, about 2 minutes. Season with salt and pepper and turn out onto a baking sheet to cool. Transfer to a bowl and stir in the ham.

In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs and cream. Season with the 1/2 tsp. salt, 1 or 2 grindings of pepper and the nutmeg. Scatter the leek mixture evenly over the bottom of the pastry shell. Pour in the egg mixture and mix lightly with a fork to distribute evenly. Sprinkle evenly with the cheese.

Bake until the custard is set and the top is golden, 40 to 45 minutes. If the custard is set but the top has not turned golden brown, slip the quiche under the broiler for 1 to 2 minutes, watching closely. Let cool about 20 minutes in the pan on a rack before serving. Makes one 9-inch quiche.

Adapted from Williams-Sonoma Family Meals, by Maria Helm Sinskey (Oxmoor House, 2008).