Leeks nestle inside cheese pastry

Gretchen McKay
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Serve with a peppery arugula salad and a glass of burgundy wine for a complete meal.

Leek Flamiche With Cheese Pastry


81/2 ounces (scant 12/3 cup) all-purpose flour, plus extra for dusting

41/2 ounces (9 tablespoons) cold butter, cut into small cubes

1/2 cup finely grated gruyere

2 to 3 tablespoons chilled water

Melted butter, for brushing


2 ounces butter

4 leeks, white and pale green parts only, washed well and thinly sliced

2 tablespoons dry white wine

Pinch of sea salt flakes

101/2 ounces creme fraiche or light sour cream

2 large eggs

2 large egg yolks

Pinch freshly grated nutmeg

Make pastry: Sift flour onto clean work surface. Toss butter and cheese in flour, then rub lightly until mixture resembles very large flaky bread crumbs. Make a well in the center and add water. Combine mix to a rough paste; knead until smooth.

Gather pastry together and form into a flat disc. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate 20 minutes.

Roll pastry out to 1/4-inch thickness. Brush an 8- to 9-inch fluted tart tin with melted butter. Using rolling pin, lift pastry into tin and press it gently to the edge and flutes. (Allow extra height up the side, as it will shrink during baking.)

Chill pastry in tin for 20 minutes. Meanwhile, heat oven to 350 degrees.

Line pastry with parchment paper and fill with baking beads, dried beans or rice. Bake for 15 minutes, then remove paper and weights and bake for an additional 5 minutes. Remove from oven and set aside.

Make filling: Melt butter in saucepan over low heat. Add leek, then cover and cook, stirring occasionally, for 10 minutes. Stir in wine and salt, cover and cook for another 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove lid and continue cooking for a few more minutes until liquid has evaporated. Set aside to cool.

In mixing bowl, combine creme fraiche or sour cream, eggs, egg yolks, nutmeg and cooled leek. Pour mixture into pastry case and smooth top with spatula. Bake for 40 minutes or until pastry top is golden and center is set.

The flamiche can be served warm or refrigerated overnight in an airtight container and served at room temperature the following day. Serves 6.

— “Le Picnic: Chic Food for On-The-Go” by Suzy Ashford (Smith Street Books, May 2017, $19.95)