Quiche with Leeks, Thyme and Goat Cheese
A healthier spin on the traditional quiche. The crust is made from oat flour and sunflower seeds, and then filled with leeks, fresh thyme, crumbled goat cheese and spinach. Perfect for breakfast, lunch or dinner! Gluten Free.
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Growing up, quiche was never part of our regular dinner rotation at home. If my mom couldn't cook it in a wok, it probably wasn't making it to the dinner table. And thank goodness she wasn't brave enough to try that. Yet, I still have some oddly vivid memories of quiche. I think it started in high-school, when I spent two years working part-time at a high-end tea store. My job actually involved describing which flavor of quiche paired best with the customer's tea selection…(I wish I could tell you that was a joke – it's not). I spent so much time talking about, prepping and serving quiche that at best my position on them was one of indifference.
That all changed in university, when I discovered Costco-sized packs of frozen pie crust. And let's not forget about those massive cartons of eggs. Very quickly, I became quiche obsessed. I would bake up multiple quiche and eat them throughout the week. Some days I would have a slice for breakfast, a slice for lunch and a slice for dinner. For a time- and cash-strapped student, it was perfect.
But as you might expect, my infatuation with quiche quickly died down after I moved on from my university days. Not only was I bored of consuming my body weight in frozen pastry and eggs, but now I was actually making some money! And as quickly as quiche had re-entered my life, it was now gone. But like any good romance movie, we obviously get back together. And that's the fun part! Recently, I've been playing around with gluten-free pie crusts. And, after having much success with a sweet version for my mom's birthday, I decided that a savory version should work as well.
Since you're probably up to your eyeballs with holiday meal planning, I figured I'd save you the hassle of a finicky roll-out crust. That's right, we're going to rock a delicious, savory press-in pie crust for this recipe. There's no flour, kneading or even rolling pins involved. How easy is that?! And not only is this savory crust faster and easier than your standard shell, but it's also a whole lot healthier. Just what we need to hear around the holidays, right?
The delicious savory crust is made from a combination of oat flour and sunflower seeds. Oats make for a lovely whole-grain alternative in gluten-free baking, and they're dirt cheap compared to buying other gluten free flours. I like to make my own homemade oat flour by simply giving whole oats a whirl in the food processor. It's so easy I bet you'll never consider buying oat flour again! The addition of sunflower seeds provides an extra level of flavor in the crust – especially because we give them a quick toast before baking. Toasting the seeds is a great way to bump up flavor, and also helps make them easier to digest. And digestion is important, because there's so much good stuff in these little seeds!
And, their naturally occurring oils help create a lightened up version of a standard pastry crust. Don't get me wrong, we'll still need extra fat to bring this crust together – but with the help of these little seeds, we won't need a whole stick of it.
The filling in this quiche is a combination I love. The leeks are classic, the thyme keeps things fresh and the goat cheese – well, does cheese ever need an explanation? I threw in some spinach at the last minute, and I'm glad I did because the color is stunning. The combination is satisfying, but doesn't leave you feeling weighed down. And funny enough, after all these years, I could still have this quiche for breakfast, lunch or dinner.
If you're familiar with quiche, you already know that it works well with all types of sides. When serving quiche for lunch or dinner, I like to throw together a simple arugula salad. The peppery notes of the arugula pair really well with this quiche. I didn't include a recipe for the arugula salad, because I always eyeball it – and spend all of 30 seconds putting it together. It usually goes like this: large handfuls of arugula, squeeze of lemon, drizzle of olive oil, and several cracks of salt and pepper. But feel free to get creative and use whatever ingredients you have on hand. If you plan to eat the quiche for brunch instead, I'd imagine that some roasted potatoes would pair very nicely on the side. Store any extras in the fridge and re-heat the next day (or eat it cold – Anguel actually likes it better that way!).