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Sealed With a Quiche: A Romantic Brunch Dish

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Quiche, when done right, is a thoroughly luxurious experience--eggy, cheesy, creamy, fluffy, and rich. Until recently, the French custard tart was considered outdated (hence the phrase, "real men don't eat quiche"), but thanks to the creativity of top chefs, this humble dish is back on menus nationwide--and yes, your man will like it, too! Since eggs are one of the top 10 food trends of 2010, ESSENCE.com decided to take a closer look at this brunch favorite.   The options for fillings are endless (leeks, spinach, or smoked ham, just to name a few), and lower-fat cheeses and cream can be substituted for lighter varieties. Pair a warm slice of quiche with a fresh green salad and a glass of wine or a mimosa, and mon dieu, you will be in for a heartwarming, Parisian-style meal. At Thomas Keller's Bouchon Bakery in New York's Time Warner Center, quiche is made in the French tradition. Keller, a self-professed quiche fanatic, takes the commonplace dish to soaring heights: the quiche du jour must be at least three inches high, the egg custard is rich but light, and the emphasis is on the flaky, delectable crust. "What distinguishes a quiche made in the French culinary tradition is the crust," reads Bouchon bakery's website. "While some think of it only as a vessel to faithfully carry the ingredients to the table, for us it is so much more--an anchor that holds the presentation together both literally and figuratively, creating a thoroughly luxurious experience."   Chef Josie LeBalch has a cult following for the complimentary small slice of wild mushroom and gruyere quiche she serves as an amuse bouche at her progressive American restaurant, Josie, in Santa Monica, Calif. LeBalch's quiche focuses on the top layer of browned cheese, and the crust is almost cookie-like. (LeBalch reveals her recipe on the restaurant website, for you adventurous types.) Right outside the French Quarter in New Orleans, the casual-chic Marigny Brasserie offers a sumptuous crab quiche for brunch featuring jumbo lump crabmeat, green apples, wild mushrooms, roasted sweet peppers, and gouda cheese. Paired with drink specials and live music, brunch here is for lovers and friends alike.   Read more:
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