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leek, potato and quinoa casseroleLove the creaminess and combination of leeks with potatoes in vichysoisse but don’t want soup? Me either. I wanted to cook something with quinoa. Adapted from a foodnetwork recipe, this dish provides more protein and less fat than the traditional soup. While I adore anything with cream, I’ve been slowly reintroducing animal proteins into my diet, and not at every meal. I needed to use eggs and wanted to use cheese. The cream was kicked off the team and replaced with coconut milk. Seemed like a fair trade.

Leeks are a staple in the Brittany region of France, so I chose to use French cheese. Comté is French for “country,” perfect for a comfort casserole. Comté is made from unpasteurized cow’s milk with a strong and sweet taste. The result was a smooth casserole with subtle flavors. I think I may eat it for breakfast, too.

leek, potato and quinoa casseroleLeeks, Red Potatoes and Quinoa Casserole

What you need:

  • 1 c quinoa, cooked according to directions (about 1/2 c dried quinoa cooked in 1 c liquid)
  • 15 sm red potatoes, diced and steamed
  • 2 leeks, white and light green parts only, rinsed, halved lengthwise and sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 2 shallots, chopped
  • 1 roasted red pepper (jarred, I had no time to roast fresh), chopped
  • 2 tbs EVOO
  • 4 lg eggs
  • 1/2 c coconut milk (or milk, cream, etc)
  • 1 1/2 c Comté or Gruyere, shredded
  • 4 sage leaves, chiffonade
  • Freshly ground sea salt and black pepper

What you do:

  • Preheat the oven to 350°F.
  • Prepare shallow 2-qt baking dish with EVOO.
  • Coat a shallow 2-quart casserole with butter
  • Heat EVOO in sauté pan.
  • Add leeks and cook for 5 minutes, stirring often.
  • Add shallots and garlic; continue to cook for a couple of minutes.
  • Add red pepper and cook for another 5 minutes.
  • Remove from the heat and set aside.
  • In large bowl, beat the milk and eggs.
  • Stir in quinoa and mix.
  • Add cheese, potatoes, leek mixture and sage.
  • Season with salt and pepper.
  • Pour into prepared baking dish.
  • Bake 40 to 45 minutes, uncovered.