This recipe for a Kale Pie is in no way shape or form a vintage recipe–unless maybe it’s forebears came from Italy a couple hundred years ago.
I will chalk up my fascination with things in pie crust to my English ancestors who tended to pile all kinds of savory meals into pie crust. That, and the fact that I almost always have some Perfect Pie Dough in my freezer.
Of course, besides being obsessive about baking pies, I am very interested in how fashions in foods change. Do you remember when quiche appeared in our lives? Not all that long ago (unless you had run into it in Switzerland, as our family had in the early 80s.). But when quiche arrived on menus across America, you would not find kale on those same menus. Now kale is the “in” vegetable, and I even grow it in my back yard. By the way, it is incredibly easy to grow, so if you use it, try growing your own.
Some time ago, I came across a recipe in my favorite cookbook, Joy of Cooking (the edition that Ethan Becker modernized in 1997). The recipe is called Chard Tart and other than the fact that it has greens and eggs and cheese in a pie crust doesn’t really taste like my Kale Pie. But when I found the recipe, I didn’t have any chard. I had kale, and was just beginning to figure out how to use it. So I thought, if it works this way, it would certainly work to add kale to a quiche recipe.
So, I took the quiche recipe which I have made many times with various additions, and substituted parmesan cheese for the swiss cheese, bacon for the ham, and Voila–Kale Pie.