If I challenged you to eat an entire plate of onions, you’d probably call me crazy. But then I’d set down this plate of onion-adjacent vegetables with cheese and butter, and you’d eat the entire thing. It’s shocking, really, how lovely and sweet the leek can be with just a little help.
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 6 large leeks (see Note), white and pale green parts only, cut into 1-inch sections
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 3 large cloves garlic, minced
- 1/2 cup stout
- 1 teaspoon grated lemon zest
- 1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
- 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1/4 cup chopped pecans
Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the leeks and cook, stirring occasionally, until they start to brown, about 5 minutes. Season with the salt.
Stir in the garlic, then the beer. Reduce the heat to medium and cook, stirring occasionally, for about 10 minutes, until the pan is mostly dry.
Combine the lemon zest, lemon juice, mustard, vinegar, and Parmigiano-Reggiano in the bowl of a food processor and process until well blended. With the machine running, slowly add the oil through the feed tube, blending until well combined.
Transfer the leeks to a serving plate. Drizzle the dressing over the top as desired. Garnish with the pecans and serve immediately.
Note: To properly wash a leek (these things can trap an impressive amount of dirt!), cut off the root and slice the leek lengthwise to expose the inner layers, where dirt hides. Wash well under cool running water, making sure to remove the grit between the leaves. From there you are ready to slice. If you see any remaining dirt once the leeks have been sliced, put them all in a strainer and rinse again.
Reprinted with permission from “Lush: A Season-by-Season Celebration of Craft Beer and Produce” by Jacquelyn Dodd, Agate Surrey, October 2019.