In this recipe we take a look at a classic French way on how to prepare leeks to be serve as a starter and served with a choice of 2 sauces. French dressing or Vinaigrette and a apple cider veloute. the main component of course here are the leeks. they need to be of small caliber and really fresh. in terms of portion it is usually 2 leeks per person for starter or as a side dish.
Ingredients for 4 people:
For the Leeks in French dressing you will need: 4 to 6 fresh small caliber Leeks (ideally from you local market) then a good amount of french dressing.
To make the French dressing:
- 2 pinch of salt and pepper
- 2 tablespoon of red wine vinegar (or other vinegar you like)
- 5 tablespoons of olive oil
For the Leeks with the cider veloute you will need:
- 4 to 6 fresh small caliber Leeks (ideally from you local market)
- Half an onion finely chopped (medium size)
- 10 grams of butter / 1 tablespoon
- 5 grams / about half a heaped tablespoon of plain all purpose flour
- 160 ml / half a cup of dry cider
- 100 to 150 ml / up to half a cup of creme fraiche or heavy whipping cream (depending how how creamy and thin you like the sauce to be)
- .1 squeeze of lemon juice salt, pepper to taste. a pinch of grated nutmeg
Put a large saucepan or Stockpot on high heat, fill with enough water (4 to 5 liter) and add some rock salt (about 20 to 30 grams.) leave on the stove until the reach the boils.
In the meantime wash and cut your leeks. to do that, cut each leeks in two part .Cutting the leeks where the green colors begin) keep the white parts and reserve the green part for other use such as soups or stocks. when done remove the outer leaf of each leek and if needed (for cleaning purpose) make a cross shape toward the top of the leek and rinse under fresh water to remove any sands and residues.
when the leeks are trimmed and cleaned, tight them together in ballot of 4 using cooking string. by the time you are done the water should be boiling. so plunge the leeks ballots in the boiling water and leave them to cook covered for 15 minutes.
when cooked take the leeks out lay them flat on a tray or plate. remove teh excess water and let them rest until they reach room temperature. (make sure you drain them well)
Making the Sauces:
For the Cider veloute proceed as follow
In a saucepan on low heat put the butter and onions and leave to cook on low heat for 2 minutes. Add the flour to the mix and cook for a further 2 minutes.when done add the cider and lemon juice and stir continuously. when the mix thicken starting adding t cream bit by bit until you get the desired consistency. a veloute should be creamy not thick and not too liquid. when the consistency is right, turn the heat of and season with salt pepper and nutmeg. the sauce can now be used straight away.
For the french dressing:
put the salt and pepper in a small bowl. add the vinegar. stir well until the salt dissolve with the vinegar.then add the olive oil while stirring continuously.
When the sauces are ready you can serve the leeks.
Serve two leek per person on small plates along with a bowl of French dressing and a Bowl of veloute.
Ps : the leftover veloute can be served with salmon or trout.