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   -  Spinach, Leek and Bacon Quiche <<back
  Spinach, Leek and Bacon Quiche  

Serves 8-10

This quiche recipe has a supple cream cheese crust that bakes up light and fluffy. Greek yogurt adds a tang to the creamy egg center baked with sauteed leeks, spinach and crunchy bacon bits.

For the Cream Cheese Pastry Shell:
- 283g unsalted butter, very cold and cut into chunks
- 283g cream cheese, very cold and cut into chunks
- teaspoon salt
- 340g all-purpose flour
- 1.8 kg bag of uncooked beans for baking (these are not to be eaten and can be reused for another time)

For the Quiche Filling:
- 450g bacon, cut into large dice
- 1 cup leeks, white parts and light green only (about 1 small leek)
- 6 cups spinach leaves
- 225g havarti cheese, shredded
- 6 large eggs
- 2 cups plain Greek yogurt (fat-free, low fat or whole)
- 1 cup whole milk
- ¼ teaspoon white pepper
- ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg

For the Cream Cheese Pastry Shell
1. Add the butter and cream cheese to the bowl of a stand mixer and mix with a paddle attachment until combined. Add the flour to the bowl, sprinkle with the salt and combine on low speed until just combined and the flour is in pieces the size of peas. Dump onto a clean surface sprinkled with flour and mold into a disc. Cover with plastic wrap and chill for at least 30 minutes.

2. Transfer the dough to a lightly floured surface and roll out into a 38 cm circle, moving the dough in a circular fashion each time you make a pass or two with the rolling pin so it doesn't stick. Add more flour under the dough as needed. Carefully roll the dough around the rolling pin and transfer to a 23 cm pan with a removable bottom. Gently press into the pan and leave at least a 1 cm or more overhang. Prick the bottom of the dough with a fork. Freeze in the pan for 2 hours or overnight.

For Assembling the Quiche
3. Preheat the oven to 190 degrees C and place a baking sheet on the bottom rack of your oven to catch any drippings that may occur.

4. In a large skillet cook the bacon over medium heat stirring occasionally until the bacon is lightly browned. With a slotted spoon, transfer the bacon to a plate covered with a paper towel for the bacon to drain and cool.

5. Remove all but 2 tablespoons of the bacon drippings and cook the sliced leeks until tender, about 5-7 minutes. Add the spinach in batches and cook until it has wilted and cooked down. Remove from the heat and cool.

6. Pull the frozen pie crust from the freezer and line it with parchment paper and fill the entire pan with the uncooked beans to the very top of the pan. Bake for 20 minutes or until the crust is lightly golden brown. Remove the beans and parchment paper and then layer the partly cooked pie crust with the cheese, bacon and the spinach and leek mixture, reserving 1 tablespoon or so of each ingredient.

7. Add the eggs, milk, yogurt, white pepper and ground nutmeg to a blender and blend until frothy. Pour the custard over the layered ingredients in the pan. Sprinkle with the reserved ingredients. Reduce the oven temperature to 190 degrees C and bake for 1½ hours or until the top is lightly browned and custard is just set in the middle (74 degrees C). If the top is getting too browned and inside isn't yet cooked, tent with aluminum foil and cook in additional 10 minute increments.

8. Cool in the pan for 10 minutes then use a serrated knife to cut the crust flush with the top of the pan. Cool for another 30 minutes in the pan then carefully remove the pan ring. Cut into wedges and serve or refrigerate for up to 2 days.

** To reheat the quiche, place on a baking sheet and wrap in aluminum foil. Bake for 10-15 minutes at 190 degrees C or until warmed in the center of the custard.

ref: www.foodiecrush.com

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