Leeks: How to clean a leek

Things have been pretty busy around here lately and we just did not get a chance to get in the kitchen this weekend.  So, we thought we would take a look back in our archives.  Here we show you how to clean and cut leeks.  They are funny vegetables, but delicious and can be used in so many dishes.   While we never got into that kitchen of ours, we did do a little editing of our very first video, which you can find on our about us page.

Last posted, 11 August, 2009

We have to admit, leeks do look a little funny, but trust me they are  easy to work with and easy to cook.  Leeks don’t seem to be very popular in America, which is strange since you see them used extensively in other countries.  It seems some people only relate leeks to leek and potato soup. Don’t get me wrong, I love leek and potato soup, but there are so many more ways to cook with leeks.  They have a sweet mild onion flavor and can be extremely tender when cooked.  They are perfect for use in soups and stews, but I think they really shine when you roast or braise them.  Leeks are grown in sandy soil, so before you start cooking with them, you should know how to effectively clean them.  It is pretty simple and does not take that much time at all, just follow 4 steps.


Step One: Cut off the dark green leaves about an inch from the while part of the stalk.  Some people suggest to use the green leaves to add flavor to stock or broths, so I might try that next time.

How to Clean Leeks -2

Step Two: Cut the leek half lengthwise, but don’t cut all the way through the root.

Step 2

Step Three: Place the leek into a bowl of water and move it around.  Using your fingers pull apart the layers to check for hidden sand. (You could also do this under running water, but the bowl works well and uses less water).


Step 3


Step Four: Slice the leeks however you wish.  If you are using them in a soup or stew you might want to slice the leeks thinner so the texture “fades away” into the dish during cooking, just leaving the flavor.  Leeks also work really well in a stir fry, cutting them lengthwise works the best.

Step 4

Of course there are always multiple ways to do things, so here is another way to clean leeks.  Pre-cut the leeks and place them in a bowl full of water.  Leave the leeks for about 15 minutes and you will find the sand sinks to the bottom and the leeks float on the top.  Take the leeks out of the bowl and rinse.  Pat dry and you are ready to go.

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3 comments… Leave a Comment

  • Esme March 7, 2010, 11:18 pm

    Thanks for this-I love adding leeks to my stir fries.

    Reply
  • the wicked noodle March 9, 2010, 8:35 am

    Y’know, with all the cooking I’ve done, I’ve never been able to bring myself to try cooking with leeks! I’m sure it’s not difficult and I adore leeks…so I’m going to try this asap – no more putting it off! Thanks, guys!

    Kristy
    (formerly of Refrigerator Soup, now just back to Noodlin’)

    Reply
  • inspiredtaste March 9, 2010, 9:20 am

    Oh, you must give cooking with leeks a try. It is no more difficult than peeling and cutting up a squash or even an onion, really. Good luck!

    Thanks, Joanne

    Reply

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