Exhausted from a long week of work, I stood with my hands clutching onto the fridge doors, grasping for something to eat on the barren shelves. I wanted something simple, something satisfying and delicious, but all I could scrounge up was a single leek, a handful of mushrooms, some eggs and a bit of cream. Now, I’ve learned a thing or two from mom. She’s no Master Chef. And, she doesn’t often take the prize for her cooking. But mom does 3 things and she does them right: lasagna, curry, and quiche. Quiche for dinner, quiche for potlucks, quiche for birthdays, quiche for holidays - A lifetime of quiche and it seemed only natural to pass me the torch for this egg-centric dish.
The delicious sister to onion and garlic, the leek is bursting with Vitamin C, Iron, and Fiber. Experiencing nosebleeds? According to legend, Hippocrates (father of medicine) prescribed leeks to cure them. Pining for some Welsh friends? The Welsh love their leeks, wearing them as their national “flower” on St. David’s day to celebrate the legend of Welsh warriors wearing leeks to war (now that’s a mouthful!). Leeks are available now in Ontario, but won’t be in March, so go out and get them…before they’re gone!
Leek, Mushroom and Goat Cheese Quiche
1 pie crust
3 large eggs
1 cup of half and half cream
1 large leek
1 cup of sliced white mushrooms
½ cup of goat cheese
2 tbsp mozzarella/parmesan/cheddar cheese
1-2 tsp. each of salt and pepper
2-4 tbsp. olive oil for cooking
Create your own pastry shell using a basic pie crust recipe, or buy a ready-made pie crust from your local grocery store. OK, I admit it! I cheated here and used a boxed crust (sh…don’t tell mom). Either way, prepare your crust, and set it aside until you are ready to fill it with delicious Greenbelt goodies.
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees farenheit. Pour out some olive oil onto your frying pan until you get a nice sizzle going. Make sure you wash your leeks really well - dirt tends to hide amongst the leaves and crevices of the stalky green vegetable. Slice up your mushrooms and throw them into the pan with your leeks. Saute the combination until they are nice, tender, and golden, and add some salt to taste.
Beat your 3 eggs together, adding salt and pepper as you go. Combine eggs with cream.
Spread your leek mushroom mixture across the bottom of your prepared crust, then crumble goat cheese all around the vegetables. Pour your wet mixture overtop the vegetables and cheese, and grate some hard cheese onto the surface of the quiche.
Carefully, slide the quiche onto the middle rack of your oven, and let it cook about 35-40 minutes, or until golden brown and you can test the middle of the quiche with a fork and it comes out clean.
So go home today, and enjoy the end of a busy week with your quiche, dreaming about all the fun you can have at the Royal Botanical Gardens tomorrow morning! Join us for some more 5th anniversary fun, on Saturday February 6, from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. at the RBG Arboreum just off Old Guelph Road in Hamilton, Ontario. Bring your family for some delicious food, a bonfire, ice skating, winter hikes, and other extraordinarily happening outdoor activities! Check out our Facebook fan page or follow us on Twitter for more details! Hope to see you there!