Leek Recipes

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Grilled Artichoke and Endive Salad Recipe Recipe

Grilled artichoke and endive salad is one of the dishes I concocted in the tiny kitchen of the Parisian apartment we rented. Don't get me wrong, we loved the place where we stayed at. It's just that the kitchen had the bare minimum: a sink and a toaster-sized oven topped with 2 burners. First I steamed leeks, then grilled a red bell pepper, the endives and artichokes and coated pieces of Rocamadour cheese in herbs. The mixture makes a colorful, tasty first course.

I'm a little slow at sharing the recipes from our recent trip to Europe. It takes some time to process all the photos, so I promise they should be ready after the celebration of the Chinese New Year. Stay tuned!

In case you're wondering who the man in the collage is, he's one of the many vendors who operate stalls at the Daumesnil open air market on Tuesdays and Fridays. I was snapping photos as I meandered through the market and he begged me to take one of him. The merchants in Paris tend to have a lot of personality (they sing, they scream, they rhyme; whatever it takes to get people's attention) and they do their best to entice you to buy their food. He was quite a ham and was absolutely thrilled when I told him I'd post his picture on the site.

Grilled Endive Recipe with Picture


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Cream of Tomato Soup Recipe (Soupe Tomate et Basilic) Recipe

Cream of tomato soup is a dish we make whenever I'm too lazy to go to the grocery store. It's flavorful, filling and easy to make. Best of all, the ingredients for the soup are usually available in our garden, pantry and refrigerator.

Because tomatoes are not fully grown in our garden yet, I used canned plum tomatoes and added heavy cream to give the soup a velvety texture. I also used a mirepoix of vegetables, which is a combination of coarsely chopped carrots, onions, leeks and celery. We usually eat tomato soup with a baguette, toast or a grilled cheese sandwich. Simple is beautiful!


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Parsley-Walnut Pesto Penne Pasta with Asparagus Recipe

I had some leftover curly parsley from my stuffed tomatoes, and some walnuts leftover from my kiwi tarts, and I needed to figure out what to do with them. Pesto seemed like the perfect way to utilize the ingredients I had on hand. The parsley provided the green color and "herby" flavor typically delivered by the more commonly used basil.  I used the walnuts in place of pine nuts, and blended them with the parsley along with some olive oil. I added some walnut oil as well to accentuate the flavor of the whole walnuts and tossed the mixture with sautéed leeks and asparagus and mini penne pasta.

Finding ways to use not only your leftovers, but your leftover ingredients, will save you time and money. You just need to have a few flexible, go-to recipes in your culinary arsenal, and you'll be prepared to face whatever your refrigerator and pantry throw at you. Pesto is definitely one of those recipes.


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Tarragon Sweet Potato Roast Bell Pepper Soup Recipe

I recently posted the garlic parmesan bread. Per Anna's request, this is the recipe of the tarragon sweet potato roast bell pepper. It's a very soothing soup, especially when you are as sick as I am today. It's my version of comfort food.  But don't wait until the next time you have a cold.  It's super easy to make, so try it out tonight!

I roasted the sweet potatoes to bring out their natural sweetness. And of course, I added some heavy cream to give it a richer mouth feel. It's always nice to infuse a strong herb into a soup, and I chose tarragon for its peppery and sweet liquorice flavor. I have a ton in my garden; it's an easy to grow perennial, and if you're looking for something to add to you herb garden, tarragon is a great choice.


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Leeks served with a Kumquat Clementine Vinaigrette Recipe

Leeks vinaigrette is a simple and healthy recipe to welcome Spring. The leeks are simply steam-cooked and then drizzled with the vinaigrette. I brightened the vinaigrette with some sweet clementines and kumquats from my garden. The zest of the citrus brings a lot of flavor.

Leeks are from the onion family but their taste is much more subtle and mild. In fact, they have a natural, gentle sweetness that can be paired very successfully with more sour, acidic flavors. If you've never had leeks, it's time to give them a try!


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