The summer vegetables have all but disappeared from the farmers market here in South Jersey, but the fall vegetables are plentiful. Saturday morning, I set off for the farmers market with two items at the top of my list - leeks and mushrooms. On the menu Saturday night was Savory Mushroom and Gruyere Bread Pudding from the Pass the Sushi blog. The bread pudding was really good; I recommend giving it a try.
The recipe called for just the whites and light green portions of leeks, and I found myself with handfuls of leek leaves left over. I set out to find out how to use the leaves and found they can be used in a variety of delicious ways.
1. Deep-Fried Crumbles
Julienne (long thin strips) and deep-fry them in a tempura like batter. Crumble them and use them as a topping on soups and salads, like bacon bits. (via Thrifty Fun)
2. Freeze for Soup
Freeze them to add when you’re making soup stock.
3. Bouquet Packet
Enclose herbs in a green leek blade and tie into a packet for a bouquet garni. (via Vegetable Gardener)
Add them to a stir-fry. The tough green leaves can withstand the high heat of this method, but must be stirred constantly and cooked briefly. (via Vegetable a Month)
5. Make a Rack
Use them as a "rack" under roasted meat or chicken. It adds a little flavor to the drippings and raises the meat slightly from the pan. Discard them before using the drippings for gravy. (via Serious Eats)
6. Steam Them
Add them to the bottom of a bamboo steamer to impart flavor to lean fish and chicken. (via About.com)
7. Make a Tart
Use to make a Leek Tart.
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