Hand drawn image of Leek

Leek

Allium ampeloprasum var. porrum

Beautiful organic leeks, straight from our fields. We choose the tastiest varieties and grow them slowly for flavour. One of the first crops we ever grew, they’re still a favourite. Punchy and potent, they turn gorgeously sweet when cooked.

Image of Leek being produced

In the kitchen

Storage

Will keep happily for a week or so in your fridge. If you’ve kept them for too long and they begin to look a bit shabby, you can strip away and discard the top few layers. You’ll know when they are no good to eat – nothing smells quite like a rotting leek.

Prep & Cooking tips

Always wash a leek as they love to trap mud and grit in their funnel shaped leaves. This is best done by splitting them in half and cleaning them in cold water with the leaves pointing down.

Blanch, braise or stir-fry. You can use more of a leek than you think. The dark green tops are tough but perfect for stock pots and long cooked stews. If you fumble through the layers you’ll find a core as light, tender and usable as the lower part.

Video: How to Cook Leeks

Easy ideas

1. Steamed or boiled

Leeks will cook faster than you think: 3-4 mins when sliced, 8-10 when whole. This will, of course, vary with their size. Always season the water well with salt if boiling. Whole leeks are done when the tip of a knife will pass through without much resistance.

2. Griddled

Trim the leeks and keep whole. Boil or steam as above. Strip away the top layer of skin. Season lightly with salt. Heat a griddle pan or BBQ rack until smoking hot. Split the leeks in half lengthways. Place them on the griddle for about 20 seconds each side, or so they have taken the line marks but not started to burn.

3. Slow cook

Leeks, like their cousin the onion, will be transformed by a low and slow spell in a pan. Slice or dice your leeks and sweat down on a gentle heat. Oil is fine but adding butter is a marriage made in heaven. Take care not to let them colour and burn – unlike onions this makes them bitter and unpalatable.

4. Soup

Leeks are made for a warming soup bowl. Use a slow-fried shredded leek as a base for your chosen soup in place of an onion, or go for the classic leek and potato. Try this recipe for leek and potato soup with cheese and herb scones.

Goes well with

Cured meat
Chicken
Dairy (Cheese, Cream, Crème fraîche, Sour cream, Yogurt)
Fish
Herbs (Chives, Chervil, Mint, Parsley, Tarragon, Thyme)
Lemon
White wine

Leek recipes

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In the field

  • Meet the grower: Antony & Mary Coker, Rattery, Devon

    The Cokers run Home Park Farm where Antony and Mary farm organic vegetables and sheep in a traditional mixed system.

    Read more

Seasonality

jan
feb
mar
apr
may
jun
jul
aug
sep
oct
nov
dec

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