Braised Leek Recipe
for Your Dinner Party

"Backward Braised Leeks"

Braising is a combination of browning and simmering, usually in that order. But my braised leek recipe is a little different. The leeks are simmered first, then browned under the broiler with lemon, breadcrumbs, and freshly grated Parmesan cheese. 

So, I had to call this recipe either "Backward Braised Leeks" or "Leeks with a Real Wow Factor for the Dinner Party." Forward thinker that I am, I opted for the more memorable name.

Backward Braised Leeks

6 to 8 medium-sized leeks
Juice of 1 lemon
Salt and pepper to taste

How to Clean Leeks

Leeks are always full of dirt. There are 2 ways to remedy that:

For the braised leek recipe, or any recipe that calls for leaving the bulbs intact, make a cut from the center of each bulb out to the end of the leeks. Then carefully fan the leek layers under cold running water to rinse the dirt out. 

For a recipe like Vichyssoise, that calls for slicing or chopping the leeks, do just that. Trim the the leeks, chop or slice them, transfer to a colander, and rinse with cold running water.  

1/2 cup unseasoned breadcrumbs or panko crumbs, toasted

    Toast bread crumbs by browning them over medium heat in a dry skillet. Stir often.

3 to 4 tablespoons Parmesan cheese, freshly grated
3 tablespoons butter, divided

Trim and discard the dark green, leafy portions from the leeks leaving only the white and pale green portions. Trim the raffia-looking roots from the leeks, if you like, leaving the white bulb ends intact. Next, clean the leeks. (See the box "How to Clean Leeks.")

Lay the leeks in a large, shallow saucepan, in a single layer. Add water to just cover. Bring the water to a low boil and simmer the leeks until tender, about 10 minutes. Drain and pat dry with paper towels.

Place the cooked leeks on a buttered baking sheet, fanning them slightly, and squeeze a little lemon juice over them. Salt and pepper them to taste, then sprinkle the leeks with the bread crumbs and Parmesan cheese. Last, dot them with butter that has been cut into small pieces.

Broil the prepared leeks until the cheese melts, about 2 to 4 minutes and serve.

The braised leek recipe serves 6 happy guests.

5 Great Things to Do with Those Leftover Leek Tops

Return to see the Braised Leek Recipe in a Dinner Party Menu

Vichyssoise (Chilled Leek and Potato Soup)

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