Currently viewing the tag: "leeks"

This recipe was originally made with ramps, which is a wild onion which does not seem grow here and is really delicious and has a season about a month and a half long it seems. This is an approximation of that sauce made with items readily available here-baby leeks and scallions. The sauce is essentially a vinaigrette thickened up with lots of alliums and herbs, and is great for topping meats (this was first made for red wine marinated lamb chops) and fish, or being used on a salad made with flavorful sturdy lettuces such as romaine, Little Gems, and the like.

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This dish was inspired by a 12 pound tub of Kimes Apiary honey from the main farm I was gifted this winter. The flavor of this honey is phenomenal and brings a lot to the dish. The leeks have an earthy funky note that marries so well with honey. If you don’t have access to the Kimes Apiary honey, look for something that is floral, buttery, and low-key, and not cloyingly sweet for best results. Use these leeks as a starter dish or a side to something braised in wine or vinegar, or something fried like chicken or squid.

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Here is a riff on the famous New Mexican “Green Sauce” using end of season green Corno di Toro peppers and leeks, with a little almonds and maybe some honey for a Spanish inflection. Try this on just about anything from turkey and pork to fish and vegetables such as winter squash, or on eggs or potatoes. The original iteration has a little more heat and Southwest seasonings. Check it out on the website.

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Use this slightly sweet concoction as a sauce when cooked a little loose, or reduce it further and use it to glaze something, like Romanesco or cauliflower, fish, or pasta. For this dish to be successful, the tomatoes must be ripe and flavorful. If they are not, find another recipe to use.

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You can also do this dish with cauliflower, or even with thick carrots roll cut into 1-inch chunks. As far as seasoning goes, you could run anywhere from herbs such as thyme, and marjoram or use lovage (tastes sort of like a cross between flat parsley and the leaves of the center of a celery head), to spices with a Mid-East or Indian bent. Think garlic and cinnamon, or cumin and coriander, or curry. This iteration runs towards the European with marjoram and lovage.

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Another dish in the “I love to sauce vegetables with vegetables” category. Here, the earthy funky qualities of leeks and collards are counterbalanced with the sweetness of carrots. The carrots are cooked and milled to a consistency that is not quite a pureé, not quite chunky, but a good match for the silky leek and collards. Although the recipe seems long, the time to make is not, and it is a simple dish to prepare. The sauce goes well with other items such as cauliflower, grilled squash, chicken, pork, or fish.

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The root of this dish would be a stir-fry with daikon and mei-quin, but the flavors are more European. This would qualify as a California “fusion” dish. This dish is quite simple, but the looks are elegant with the cool jade and pale reddish pink.

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This salad has plenty of crunch along with lots of flavor thanks to the quickled leeks, arugula, and dressing. You could add beets and/or a cheese like feta along with some pistachios maybe, but don’t add too many extras or the salad will become confusing to the palate and the flavors will be muddied.

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This dish takes a bit of prep, but the results are worth it. Serve hot, warm, or room temp, as an appetizer or a light main course with a salad. It makes excellent picnic food also.

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Simple, but the flavors play so well together. The slow cooking of the carrots really sweetens them and brings out the “carrot-ness” of them, while the Allium Topping contrasts with funk and top notes. This topping goes well with other things such as steak, salmon, potatoes braised with tomatoes and pimenton de la vera.

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This topping grew out of another recipe used on salmon. This is a little more subtle, and more floral with the addition of the fennel seeds and lavender. While made initially for seared halibut, it would go nicely with pork chops, chicken, or other firm fleshed white fish. It can be tossed with kale or other greens as well, or stirred into grains such as farro or barley.      

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The Silk Robe refers to the silky texture leeks, fennel, and carrots take on when cooked slowly. You can grill the salmon, or roast it high or low temperature as you wish, or cook it entirely in a pan on the stovetop. Each method gives a different but delicious result. Higher temps yield a crispy part of the fish, where a slow and low cooking results in a supple and silky fish that matches the vegetable topping. Pan searing gives a crisp top deck and low oven heat yields silky flesh to meld with the topping. Because there are so few ingredients here, and cooking is so simple, be sure to use only the best ingredients. You could use halibut or other thick bodied flaky fish for this recipe, or even slowly poached chicken.

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This is a pureed soup, so it is smooth and “creamy” feeling, although there is no cream. The ingredients combine to make a slightly sweet soup, so serving this with a salad of bitter winter greens with a sharp-ish vinaigrette is excellent. The flavoring of this soup can go from Provençal to Southwestern American to Indian with ease. See Chef’s Notes for ideas.

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This recipe was made to go with Crisp Pan Roasted Salmon, but will go with roast chicken as well as seared scallops, black cod, or pork chops. Leeks cook to a silky texture similar to escarole, and the earthy funk combines well with the slightly bitter escarole. Although the recipe calls for white wine or sherry vinegar, a white balsamic or a good quality red wine vinegar would go great here as well. If you do go with red wine vinegar, serve a red wine that has plenty of fruit, but also some tannins to match the vinegar and act as a foil to the rich salmon and the smoothness of the vegetables. You could also toss this with pasta or grains such as farro.

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Using a slightly leaner salmon is a good strategy for this dish as the leeks and escarole have enough fatty qualities already. The Japanese peppers mentioned are fushimi and/or shishito peppers, which are quite mild but have a pleasantly “green” flavor. Searing adds another dimension of flavor that enhances the whole dish. Add shavings of carrot to the leeks and escarole (see recipe) or cook using a roll-cut and plate on the side. You can make this recipe using roast or grilled chicken or pork chops as well, but in this case the escarole-leeks will bring the richness instead of the salmon.

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Here is a dish that is perfect for Holiday tables or at home dinners, and is, in fact, a riff on the classic green bean casserole with fried onions. No cream of mushroom soup or sauce. The leeks and pancetta or bacon can be cooked a couple days prior and they will hold in the refrigerator. Be sure to keep the fat from the pancetta or bacon as the flavor is integral to the dish.

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You could do this with the vegetarian dashi, but the smoky aroma and depth of flavor from the hana-katsuo really make this dish. Although it is not quite the same, and it will tint the dish red, you could use smoked paprika if you wish to go vegetarian. Use this dish as a base for seared fish or roasted King Oyster mushrooms. You could also use this as a base for noodles/pasta.

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This dish has a little sweet and sour element, and the leeks take on a silky texture while the cabbage is cooked only enough to render it no longer raw. Use as a side dish or under something like seared salmon or halibut that has a crisp surface over the tender flaky fish.

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Add quartered and sautéed button mushrooms and a handful of cooked grains such as farro, wheat berries, or barley and use this as a one dish meal. Otherwise it is a fine side-dish. Spinach is used to supplement the turnips greens so there are more greens on the plate.

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Pureeing fennel, leeks, and butternut squash give this soup a rich creamy texture while the absence of cream or other dairy keeps it light and airy. This would even be good as a cold soup on a hot day, or could be used as a sauce for light proteins such as chicken or goat. To use as a sauce, just use less stock to thin it with. Although the recipe looks longish, it really is simple and fairly quick, and does not require a lot of attention.

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This will fill the kitchen with all sorts of wonderful aromas.

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Not a true jam, but one of a series of “jams” made from various vegetables that are used as toppings, sauce enhancers, dips, or spreads for sandwiches. There are “real” tomato jams, and they all seem to use a 1:1 ratio of sugar to tomato. Not so here, where there is only a little sugar and some vinegar to enhance the tomato flavor. Use this for fish, flattened and bread pork chops, or poultry such as grilled or roasted chicken, or roast turkey thighs or turkey scallopine.

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Peeling the squash before cutting makes it easier. Don’t worry about getting all the peel off; a little left on is fine and looks nice. If it is easier, cut it into larger pieces, and use a very sturdy peeler such as the kind with the u-shaped handle. Save the seeds to roast; just wash well and dry, then oil and sprinkle with salt and bake 10-15 minutes at 350°F or until done. Eat as is or save and use as garnish for this dish.

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This dish is sweet, nutty, and “green”, with a sweet and funky base from leeks, garlic, and sage, and then is topped with a bread crumb Persillade. Both light and satisfying, if you add some cooked shelling beans and grains like barley or farro you have robust vegetable dish that can stand alone.

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This stock first occurred one spring after market when I opened the refrigerator and found it full of whole and partial bits of green garlic and young garlic, leeks, scallions and spring onions as well as the tops I had saved, not to mention the halves of white and yellow onions. Everything was in great shape, but I needed room for the next batch of produce. So, I made stock. This recipe is sized down for the average kitchen.

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Use this as an appetizer or party food.

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Slaw like in texture, this salad is crunchy and lightly sweet from the cabbage and tomatoes, and has a refreshing aroma from the cilantro. The baby leeks, which could be replaced with scallions, add a bit of pungency and the allium funk. This salad would be great under grilled salmon or snapper, or as a side to grilled pork or barbecued ribs.

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Slowly braising Romano beans renders them meltingly tender, but they retain their shape and pick up a sweet and nutty quality. The other vegetables in the dish become silky and the chard adds depth and earthiness. Bacon always goes well with beans and greens, but if you prefer not to use it, substitute some sweet smoked paprika.

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This dish can be eaten hot or room temperature, as an appetizer or as a light main dish with a salad or soup. You can use other greens in this as well, such as arugula or spinach, and it is a great way to use greens that look less than perfect. If you do not have leeks, use onion. Garlic cloves can substitute for green garlic. The scamorza is a type of smoked mozzarella. If you do not have it, just use regular mozzarella and add Pimenton de la Vera, or smoked paprika from Spain.

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Part of the appeal of this dish is the gentle seasoning so the flavors of the ingredients stand on their own. Blanching the garlic mitigates the heat, but leaves behind the wonderful garlic flavor. If you have green garlic, that would be great in lieu of the garlic. Simply cut it into ribbons as wide as the leeks and cook it the same. For the stock, you want a very light vegetable stock, preferably homemade.

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