Fixing leeks

While telling me what was in our last veggie delivery, Jeremy said, “I think we got the things that look like scallions…but the huge ones.” I responded, “you mean leeks? I know what they are, but what the crap do I do with those?”

These are the two large leeks from Palmetto Organics.

Leeks are related to onions and garlic, and they do kinda look like steroided scallions. But other than in a soup at Sweet Tomatoes once, I had never had them.

A quick bit of research turned up two recipes–and I had all the ingredients for them. Success! Both had good reviews and seemed easy enough so I was anxious to try them out. And to get out of our just-make-something-from-the-freezer routine after being under the weather for the past couple weeks.

Oven-roasted leeks from Whole Foods:

As easy as it sounds. Just make sure to clean any dirt off, even in between the layers! And then dry them well, which is by far the hardest part of this recipe (and it’s not at all hard, just tedious).

Cut lengthwise and tossed with oil and seasonings.

Toss it in the oven for 40 minutes. Add a little chicken or veggie broth every 15 minutes or so to keep them moist.

And this is what you get. Roasted leeks full of flavor.

Shrimp, leek and spinach pasta from Real Simple:

It smelled good, it tasted good and it looked good. Once it was served it looked more mushy, but the first two and most important aspects stayed true. 🙂 Jeremy had thirds. This meal was really tasty and rewarding.

Rigatoni cooking in the rear, cut leek whites sauteing up front.

I also loved that this meal took 15 minutes to put together. It seems much fancier and involved than it really is. While the pasta cooks, melt butter in a pan and then add leeks to soften them. After five minutes, add shrimp and lemon. After five more minutes add cream and cover for two minutes. Add spinach, toss and serve over now-done pasta. Awesome.

Yum

My ending greenhorn tip is to remove your shrimp tails before you cook them in a mix. Or, embrace the hot and creamy mess that you’ll make digging them out. I did the latter and wouldn’t recommend it. But, it’s your choice!

Hope you’re having a great week. What’s cooking at your place?

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