I grew leeks for the first time this year, what a great idea that was. I pick them as I need them, leaving the rest to get bigger. This is a recipe I developed with the young tender ones. I may start blanching and freezing them now, before they get too woody, and use them for soup in the winter months. It's amazing how good vegetables taste when you grow them yourself.
Creamy Leek Gratin V
8 medium leeks, trimmed, washed and cut into rounds
Small handful fresh tarragon, finely chopped
3tbsp finely chopped chives
2 fat cloves garlic, crushed
Salt and freshly ground pepper
250ml Creme Fraiche
60g cheddar cheese, grated
60g blue cheese, crumbled, (strength according to taste)
2tbsp olive oil
1/2tsp freshly grated nutmeg
2tbsp Parmesan cheese, grated
Preheat the oven to 220C/425F/ Gas 7
In a large heavy saucepan, heat the olive oil over a moderate heat. Add the leeks Tarragon and garlic, saute for 5 minutes until softened, add the nutmeg. Season with salt and pepper.
Mix the grated cheddar and blue cheese with the Creme Fraiche.
Butter a 12" X 8" ovenproof dish and add 1/3 of the leeks followed by 1/3 of the cheese and cream mixture, continue to layer 1/3 at a time, finishing with cream/cheese mixture.
Sprinkle with chives and Parmesan cheese and bake in the oven for10-15 minutes until brown and sizzling.
Serve with rice or pasta or as an accompaniment to chicken, or for a light lunch with crusty bread.