I love the combination of leeks and apples…they pair well together and top it off with cheese – a match made in foodie heaven! Leeks are related to garlic and onions and are chock-full of nutrients. They have a delicate flavor and a sweeter taste than onions. You may have noticed ‘ramps’ in the produce section of your grocery store. Ramps are the wild version of leeks (smaller in size) and will have a stronger, garlicky flavor. You may want to consider experimenting using ramps in this recipe while they are still in season.
adapted from Ripe
4 large leeks, white and light green parts only, quartered lengthwise
1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon oil
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
60ml (1/4 cup) dry white wine
60ml (1/4 cup) vegetable or chicken stock
2 tablespoons heavy cream
1 medium Granny Smith apple, unpeeled, cored, halved and thinly sliced
90g (3/4 cup) packed shredded Gruyère cheese
Rinse leeks off under cool running water, spreading the layers to release any grit. Blanch in a pot of boiling water for 2 minutes. Drain and then add ice water. Drain again and squeeze dry between paper towels.
Combine the butter and olive oil in a large ovenproof skillet over medium-high heat. When the butter melts, add the leeks and nutmeg. Season with salt and pepper. Sauté, turning occasionally with tongs, until the leeks become lightly browned, about 5 minutes. Add the wine and stock, bring to a boil, then reduce the heat, cover, and simmer gently until very tender, about 5 minutes. Add the cream, turn up the heat slightly, and let bubble until thickened, about 4 minutes. Tuck the apple slices among the leeks. Sprinkle with the Gruyère. Broil until the cheese melts and turns golden brown, 2 to 4 minutes (watch carefully so that it does not burn). Serve immediately.
The Culinary Chase’s Note: Very addictive!