Thanks to a triple-threat combination of mimosas, girl time, and light but fully-flavored recipes like today’s Spinach Feta Quiche with Phyllo Crust, I’m steadily becoming a brunch person.
I know, I know—who doesn’t like brunch, that all-encompassing wonder meal, where it’s equally permissible to order a stack of sticky, syrupy French toast as it is a plate of smothered biscuits, bacon, and eggs? Where drinking at 11 a.m. is both welcome and encouraged? Where sweatpants are socially acceptable at all times?
Answer: a plain-Jane oatmeal lover who gets grouchy if she hasn’t had at least two slices of peanut butter toast and a cup of coffee by 8:30 a.m. Guilty.
It’s not that I don’t enjoy brunch food—after all, who can resist a cheesy, flakey-crusted quiche or pile of fluffy pancakes?—or the brunch atmosphere. Some of my favorite moments with friends are long, lazy weekend brunches, where we chat into the afternoon and take turns going back for just one more waffle, despite swearing that we were full two servings ago.
Brunch is also how I’ve gotten to know a wonderful group of women here in Milwaukee.
One of the biggest blessings over the past few months is the friends I’ve made through a local women’s organization. We all joined because we share a passion for community involvement, and it turns out that we have another love in common too: food.
We’ve met for brunch at restaurants around town, but my favorite of our gatherings are the casual meals members have hosted in their homes. We’ve treated each other to dishes that range from Chinese New Year dumplings to fondue, but lazy weekend brunches are hard to beat, especially when the menu includes spinach feta quiche.
Why I Love Leeks in Quiche
One of my favorite things about quiche is its flexibility. In winter, I use roasted veggies to make a hearty Sweet Potato Goat Cheese Quiche; in summer, bright Pesto Quiche is on the menu, and for spring, I love using leeks.
This Crustless Quiche, however, is a favorite year-round.
A mild, sweet onion, leeks lend themselves to a variety of dishes. Quiche is one of the most classic, a dynamite pairing for which we owe a debt of gratitude to the French. Sautéed leeks melt beautifully into a fluffy quiche filling, where their gentle flavor shines.
I chose to pair the leeks with spinach and feta cheese. The spinach enhances the leek’s soft spring flavor, and the feta makes the filling rich, creamy, and lightly salty.
About This Easy Spinach Quiche
Although spinach, feta, and leeks are a fairly timeless quiche combination, what makes this spinach feta quiche unique is the crust. In place of regular pie crust, I layered sheets of phyllo dough, the impossibility flakey, ethereal pastry that’s used in classic Greek dishes like baklava and spanakopita.
I loved the light, airy crunch of the flakey phyllo dough against the creaminess of the spinach feta quiche filling, as well as the rustic, ruffled edges the phyllo sheets create.
I also loved not having to make a pie crust. Phyllo dough sheets come ready-made in freezer section (easy!), but taste and look special and homemade.
Spinach feta quiche is also perfect for adding to a larger spread, such as Easter brunch. It’s pretty enough to stand alone, but lean enough to allow you to fill your plate with other dishes too. Thanks to a filling that’s made with Greek yogurt instead of heavy cream and extra egg whites, this spinach quiche is one of the lightest, loveliest quiches I’ve ever tasted.
Spoken with authority by a brunch convert: this stunning spinach feta quiche is an ideal addition to your next get together with the girls, a special family weekend, or a holiday feast. It also happens to pair beautifully with a mimosa, a combination I can heartily endorse as tested and approved!
Tools Used to Make This Recipe
Spinach Feta Quiche with Flakey Phyllo Dough Crust
For the Spinach Feta Quiche Filling:
- 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 cup leeks white and light green parts only (about 1 small leek)
- 3 cups fresh baby spinach
- 4 large eggs
- 2 large egg whites
- ¾ cup non-fat milk
- ¼ cup plain non-fat Greek yogurt
- ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- 1 cup crumbled reduced fat feta cheese (4 ounces)
For the Phyllo Dough Crust:
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter melted
- 10 phyllo sheets thawed, cut to be 12 inches on one side (the other side may be shorter depending upon the brand you purchase)
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Add the leeks and sauté 5 minutes, until tender. Add the spinach and sauté 2 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, egg whites, milk, Greek yogurt, salt, and pepper. Set aside.
- Melt the butter in a small saucepan or microwave safe bowl. Brush a 9-inch pie plate or straight-sided skillet with melted butter. Unroll the phyllo sheets in a stack, trim as needed, the cover the stack with a damp kitchen towel. Place 1 sheet of phyllo in the pie plate and brush with more butter. Continue layering the phyllo sheets in so that they form overlapping circles, brushing each layer with more butter as you go. Keep the pile covered as you work with each sheet so that the phyllo does not dry out and become brittle. Transfer the pie plate to a rimmed baking sheet.
- Spoon the spinach and leek mixture into the bottom of the crust, then sprinkle the feta over the top. Gently pour in the egg mixture. Bake the quiche on the pan for 45 to 55 minutes, until eggs are set in center and puffed slightly and the phyllo is golden brown. Let the quiche cool on a wire rack for 10 minutes. Slice and serve warm or at room temperature.
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