Leeks

Spicy Wok Clams and Leeks By Ming Tsai

Friday, August 6, 2010
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When I come across a flavor I really love, I like to spread it around, and the best way to spread the great flavor of Indonesia’s spicy sambal is with crème fraiche, the French multitasker that also mellows sambal’s heat — which you will see in todays’ recipe: Spicy Wok Clams and Leeks, an all-in-one seafood dish with a nuance of bacon and garlic.

Serves 4

Ingredients
2 slices of bacon, finely diced
4 cloves of garlic, sliced
2 large leeks, white parts only, julienned, washed, rinsed, spun dry
1 tablespoon sambal
2 pounds small clams or cockles, purged in corn meal/water solution
1 cup white wine
1/4 cup crème fraiche
Canola oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
Crusty multi grain or whole wheat bread

Directions
In a wok over medium-high heat very lightly coated with oil, render the bacon. Pour off almost all the bacon fat and add garlic and leeks, saute until softened and season with salt and pepper. Add sambal and clams and deglaze with wine and cover. Cook until clams open, about 6-8 minutes. Add crème fraiche and stir into liquid. Serve with crusty bread in large bowls.

Drink Pairing
Hopler Gewurztraminer 2003
Creamy on the palate with a long finish, this is a particularly great pairing with spicy Asian foods and seafood.
__________________________________________________________
Chef Ming Tsai is the host and executive producer of public television series Simply Ming. Each week, Simply Ming brings mouthwatering recipes inspired by the combination of East and West into homes across the nation.

Shredded Potato Cake with Leeks and Cheese
By Annie Copps

Monday, August 9, 2010
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Who doesn't love a potato? Who doesn’t love cheese? So how about potatoes and cheese in a crispy pancake? I snagged this recipe for a Shredded Potato Cake with Leeks and Cheese from the good people of Shelburne Farms. Right on Lake Champlain in central Vermont, this special place is a working farm, cheese maker, inn, and great restaurant.

Ingredients
6 tablespoons olive oil, divided
2 small leeks, white and light-green parts only, cut in half lengthwise, thinly sliced
1-1/2 pounds russet or Yukon Gold potatoes
3/4 cup grated Alpine-style cheese (such as Gruyère)
Freshly ground black pepper
Kosher or sea salt

Directions
In a medium-size cast-iron frying pan, heat 2 tablespoons olive oil over medium-low heat. Add leeks and a big pinch of salt. Cook, stirring often, until leeks are silky and lightly browned, about 20 minutes. Remove to a plate. Wipe frying pan clean.

Rinse potatoes well, but don’t peel. Shred on a box grater. Place shredded potatoes on a clean dish towel and sprinkle with another generous pinch of salt and a few grinds of pepper. Toss potatoes with your hands to season. Gather towel corners together and twist (over a bowl or sink) to remove as much moisture as possible.

In the still-warm frying pan, heat 2 tablespoons olive oil over medium heat. Add half of the shredded potatoes in an even layer; press them into the pan. Add leeks and cheese in even layers. Add remaining potatoes, pressing them into the pan.

Cover the pan and cook until potatoes are golden brown on the bottom (peek with a spatula), 8 to 10 minutes. Turn a plate (larger than the pan) over on top of the potatoes. Place your hand firmly on top of the plate and carefully flip the pan so the potato cake is on the plate.

Heat remaining oil until shimmering. Slide potato cake back into pan, raw side down; cover, and cook 8 to 10 minutes. Slide from pan and let rest 3 to 5 minutes before serving.

Recipe adapted from Cooking with Shelburne Farms: Food and Stories from Vermont by Melissa Pasanen with Rick Gencarelli.

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Annie B. Copps is a senior editor at Yankee Magazine. Annie oversees the magazine's food coverage, both as an editor and as a contributor of feature stories and columns.

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Monday, April 23, 2012
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Braised Fennel and Leeks By Annie Copps

Tuesday, February 22, 2011
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braised fennel and leeks in bowl

Typically it's a big, tough piece of meat that gets transformed by braising, but I found that when slowly cooked in a bit of wine and chicken stock, my two favorite root vegetables, fennel and leeks, turn luscious and silky. The fennel hangs on to a bit of its licorice-y-ness, while most of the onion taste of the leek converts into a vaguely sweet flavor.

Heat your oven to 400 degrees and get started with about 8 leeks. Like all vegetables, leeks come from the earth, but leeks don't like to let go of their dirty beds—be sure to wash them well, because one small grain of dirt will feel like a boulder in your mouth.

Arrange the leeks and thinly sliced fennel in a casserole dish and scatter butter over the top, then pour chicken stock and some wine into the pan. Cover with foil and cook about 40 minutes.

Remove the foil and scatter parmesan cheese and bread crumbs over the top and cook until the top is well browned. So good—the leeks and fennel are rich and creamy and the topping crunchy, a delicious and satisfying contrast of textures and flavors.

Yield: 6 servings

Ingredients
8 medium leeks, trimmed and rinsed well (discard roots and all but 2-inches of the green part—leeks should be 6 to 8 inches trimmed)
3 medium fennel bulbs, root removed and thinly sliced
2 cups low-sodium chicken stock
1 cup white wine
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
kosher salt
Freshly ground white pepper
½ cup grated parmesan cheese
½ cup panko bread crumbs

Directions
Heat oven to 400 degrees

In a medium casserole arrange leeks in one layer with sliced fennel on top.

Pour in stock and wine.

Scatter pats of butter over the top and season with salt and pepper.

Seal with foil and place in oven for 40 minutes. Remove foil. Return to oven for 10 minutes.

In a small bowl, combine parmesan and bread crumbs. Scatter over the top of the leeks and bake 5 to 8 minutes, or until well-browned.

(Courtesy: Yankee Magazine)

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annie coppsAnnie B. Copps is a senior editor at Yankee Magazine. Annie oversees the magazine's food coverage, both as an editor and as a contributor of feature stories and columns.

Braised Leeks
By Annie Copps

Wednesday, October 27, 2010
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lightly braised leeks in a dish

Braising is an easy way to soften up and draw a lot of flavor out of an ingredient. Usually we think of tough cuts of meat such as shoulders or shanks for braising, but how about some vegetables?

I am drawn to leeks, their mellow onion flavor is seductive and slow cooking them through braising coaxes out all the sweet beauty. This recipe goes well with roasted meats or a pasta dish.

Yield: 6 servings

Ingredients
12 medium leeks, trimmed and rinsed well
2 cups low-sodium chicken stock
1 cup white wine
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
Kosher or sea salt
Freshly ground white pepper
1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
1/2 cup panko breadcrumb

Directions
Clean the leeks well, like all vegetables, they grow in soil, but leeks just don’t like to let go of their dirty beds. And one small grain of dirt will feel like a boulder in your mouth if you don’t get rid of it. Discard roots and all but 2 inches of the green part; then arrange the leeks in a single layer. Dot with some butter, add some chicken stock and cover tightly with foil. Add some parmesan and bread crumbs at the end.

Heat oven to 400°.

In a medium-size casserole, arrange leeks in one layer. Pour stock and wine over top. Scatter pats of butter over the leeks and season with salt and pepper.

Seal with foil and bake 30 minutes. Remove foil. Return to oven for 10 minutes longer.

In a small bowl, combine parmesan and breadcrumbs. Scatter over top of leeks and bake 5 to 8 minutes, or until well-browned.

Thai Curried Clams and Chorizo
By Ming Tsai

Monday, August 9, 2010
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Not only do I look to the East and the West for sources of inspiration, I also look to the past for great ingredients about which we may have forgotten…like buttermilk, which used to be a staple in American kitchens. It’s not only a lighter alternative to cream, but also to Asian coconut milk, as I’ll show you today with my Thai Curried Clams and Chorizo. It’s a great one-pot-meal that features a clams and sausage combo that’s well-loved in both the East and West.

Serves 4

Ingredients
1 1/2 cups 1/4-inch-dice chorizo or 1/4 pound ground sausage
2 large leeks, white part julienned
2 pounds cockles or small littleneck clams, purged overnight in water/cornmeal/pinch of salt solution
3 tablespoons red Thai curry paste
1 cup white wine
1/2 cup buttermilk
Juice of 2 limes
2 cups cooked orzo
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
Canola oil

Directions
In a stock pot coated lightly with oil over medium-high heat, add chorizo, leeks, cockles (discard any open cockles), and curry paste, and sauté about 2 minutes, then season. Deglaze with wine and cover; cook for 6-8 minutes. Add buttermilk, lime juice, and orzo, stir to combine and check for seasoning. Serve, discarding any unopened cockles.

Drink recommendation
Chateau Villa Bel-Air Blanc, Bordeaux, France

Taste: Rich and complex with white fruit and caramel flavors.
Aroma: Honey mixed with smoky notes
60% Sauvignon Blanc, 40% Semillon

__________________________________________________________
Chef Ming Tsai is the host and executive producer of public television series Simply Ming. Each week, Simply Ming brings mouthwatering recipes inspired by the combination of East and West into homes across the nation.

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