Even though we are rolling into spring, I am not about to give up my comfort foods – not yet – maybe just liven them up a bit.
This blue cheese and leek baked dish is a staple from my days in London, and it still reads like spring to me.
Bonus: this is one vegetable dish that everyone will dig into at dinnertime! I topped it with dukkah (a Middle Eastern nutty spice mix that is fantastic!) and some toasted breadcrumbs, but you can also add some pancetta to the mix.
The recipe is very simple to execute, but the leeks do need over an hour and a half in the oven, just so you know and prep accordingly. I got it going while making Henry’s dinner, and the leeks were fork tender in time for “adult dinner time!”
These blue cheese leeks are one of those easily luxurious sides (or meals!) for me – minimal effort for something to feels like a special treat. And we could all use a bit of that!
- 8 leeks (trimmed)
- 1 quart whole milk (or cream)
- 8 oz crumbled blue cheese
- 3 teaspoons dukkah
- 3 tablespoons toasted white breadcrumbs
- ground black pepper
- Preheat oven to 400F. Line a square baking pan with foil and prepare another piece of foil to use as a cover.
- Wash the leeks well and cut them into slices about half an inch thick. This doesn't need to be too precise! You will have what seems like a lot of leeks - layer them in the pan very snugly since they will shrink as they cook.
- In a bowl, mix together milk, a generous pinch of salt and lots of black pepper. Pour over the leeks.
- Sprinkle blue cheese evenly on top of the leek mixture, followed by the dukkah and the breadcrumbs.
- Cover with foil and bake covered until fork tender, about 1 hour and 30 minutes. Uncover and bake for 15 more minutes for a bit of color and extra crunch.
That crispy creamy combination never goes out of style.