One time on Barefoot Contessa, Ina said, “This is parsley, the world’s most underrated herb.”
Well, readers, these are leeks, the world’s most underrated vegetable. (Or, probably more accurately, the vegetable I hadn’t eaten until about a week ago and am now in love with.)
Side note: For a while, I only really knew of leeks from this, which cracks me up every time:
I bought leeks originally to make Julia Child’s potage parmentier, but that recipe only needed one leek, and I bought a bunch of three. (And I vowed to use them somehow after a grocery run that felt outlandishly expensive. It wasn’t the leeks’ fault, but somehow it felt like it was since I never buy them. Anyway.)
I also kept reading recipes with leeks and thinking “Why doesn’t this have onions in it?” It’s because leeks have an onion-y flavor. The leeks are the onions. Magic.
Here are two ways I managed to use the rest of the leeks:
Pasta with Everything I Had in the Pantry and Fridge
I boiled some pasta, thawed some frozen chicken, and chopped a zucchini, most of a leek, and a clove of garlic. I sautéed the zucchini, leeks and garlic in olive oil until tender and then combined everything in the pan (veggies + pasta and chicken). Then I just added salt, pepper, a bit more olive oil, and, because why not, a pat of butter. After it was on the plate, I sprinkled some mozzarella cheese over it. Delish.
Obviously, along with the leeks, I also had some zucchini to use up. I followed this recipe and had several fritters with a salad on the side for dinner. These were like potato pancakes (delicious, but carb-y) but amped up with veggies (better?). The recipe called for a TON of red chili flakes, but I only put in about half of what was called for and it was definitely spicy enough. I also used a whole egg when the recipe only calls for a half an egg, and I had to add more oil to the pan partway through frying the fritters. All in all, this was an easy recipe and a good departure from typical dinners. And, thankfully, there are leftovers!