Riverford Wicked Leeks
Turkish poached sweet and sour leeks recipe image

Print Turkish poached sweet and sour leeks

This easy recipe is good as a side dish, especially with fish, but can also be served cold as part of a mezze selection, giving a welcome counterbalance to richer meat dishes. Use young and tender leeks to make it really sing. The formula works as well with cauliflower cut into small florets instead of leeks.


  • 8 tbsp olive oil
  • 3 garlic cloves, sliced (optional)
  • 600g whole young leeks, washed & trimmed, or older leeks cut into 3-4 inch lengths
  • 3 rounded tsp caster sugar or honey
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 300ml water
  • Handful flat leaf parsley, roughly chopped (optional)
  • Handful fresh dill, roughly chopped (optional)
  • Salt & pepper


  1. Place the olive oil in a saucepan over a medium heat and cook the garlic until lightly coloured, if using.
  2. Add the leeks, sugar, lemon juice, water and a good pinch of salt.
  3. Simmer gently with the lid slightly ajar for 15 minutes or until soft and tender, adding a little more water if the leeks are starting to look dry.
  4. Gently stir in the parsley and dill and check the seasoning. Serve with some of the poaching liquor spooned over.
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