Saturday, March 21, 2015
Years ago, when vegetables and fruits were only available in certain seasons, leeks were one of the few that survived winter and lasted until the first new spring vegetables were available. Maybe for that reason I still like most to cook and eat leeks from late fall to early spring. So the other day, which was still very cold and windy, I made a leek dish for dinner.
I wanted to try a simple Italian dish of leeks baked in cream. But when I was about to put a dish in the oven, I found in my refrigerator a piece of Gorgonzola cheese. I thought that Gorgonzola would go well with leeks in cream since this was an Italian dish. It seemed also that a slightly sharp cheese would add a little bit of spiciness to the mild and slightly sweet leeks. Then I came with the idea to finish the dish with shredded almonds to add some crunchiness. The dish turned out very nice and a combination of sweet leeks in cream and melted, spicy Gorgonzola was perfect.
It is a very simple dish that can be prepared ahead and finished (baked) at the last moment. It tastes great with baguette, tomato salad, and a glass of wine.
Leeks Baked in Cream and Gorgonzola
4 medium leeks (only the white and light green parts can be used),
1/2 cup table cream,
1/2 cup Gorgonzola cheese,
2 tbsp slivered roasted almonds,
1 tbsp butter,
salt and pepper to taste.
1. Wash leeks thoroughly, especially between the leaves to remove all the dirt.
2.Put them in a pot of salted boiling water and cook about 10 minutes, until soft. Drain and cool down them down.
3. Preheat oven to 370F.
4. Butter an over proof dish (large enough for leeks to fit in) and place the leeks in it.
5. Pour on top the cream and crumbled Gorgonzola. Season generously with freshly grated pepper. Sprinkle with almond slivers.
6. Place the dish in the oven and bake about 20 minutes until the cheese melts. Serve hot.