Leeks

Basic cooking instructions
Cut off roots, discard discoloured leaves and leaf tips. Cut in half lengthways to about 5cm below green and wash well under a running tap to dislodge mud and grit. Slice if required. Boil for 10 minutes or stir fry for 5 mins. Serve with a knob of butter or béchamel sauce.

Freezing
Prepare as above and freeze in plastic bags for up to 3 months. Use from frozen.

Recipes

Leek slice
50ml oil ........................................................................ 500g leeks, washed and shredded
200g onions, sliced finely ............................................ 225g self-raising flour
125g margarine/butter .............................................. 150ml water

Fry leeks and onions in oil until soft, and season. In bowl mix flour and margarine together, adding water to make soft and sticky dough. Mix in leek mixture. Place in greased ovenproof dish and bake for 30mins at 200C/Gas 6 until brown and crispy.

Leeks with ham in cheese sauce
4 large leeks ........................................................... 4 slices ham
500ml cheese sauce ...............................................50g grated cheese

Trim and wash leeks, and cut each leek in half (horizontally). Boil for 5 mins. Then wrap each piece in half a slice of ham and place in ovenproof dish. Pour over cheese sauce and sprinkle with a little additional cheese. Season with black pepper or paprika. Bake at 180C/Gas 4 for 30 mins. Serves 4. Serve with crusty bread.

Leek and sausage hash
8 good quality sausages ......................................... 350g leeks, washed and sliced
4 large potatoes ......................................................... 1 tablespoon wholegrain mustard
140ml single cream .................................................... 100g grated cheese, eg gruyere

Slice the potatoes and boil until tender – no more than 10 mins max. Dry fry sausages until well browned, and then slice and set aside. Fry leeks in a little oil until tender, then add potato slices, cooking until they begin to turn golden and crisp. Return sausage slices to pan with mustard and cream and heat for further 3-4 minutes. Remove from heat, sprinkle with cheese and season to taste. Serves 4.