leek love

I credit El with helping me diversify my onion-y plantings.  I had one really good onion year a few seasons back, right when I was getting serious about growing food.  I used purchased plants of storage onions, and we ate most of the winter.  After that?  Not much luck.  I started trying to grow from seed, and have not had good success.  Or maybe it was just a really good onion year, followed by meh.

Anyway I've since learned to spread my wings a bit, and now grow lots of alliums in all seasons:  walking/potato onions, Tokyo bunching, chives, etc.  And the leeks.  For some reason these have been way easier for me to grow from seed, and this year I have a wonderful crop.

As a newbie cook I looked at any recipe including leeks and in my mind read "expensive onion" and just substituted.  To buy a leek, and then use the miniscule "only white" parts per the instructions, just seemed beyond me.  But I bought a pack of Bleu de Solaize leeks from Seed Savers, and now, I'm a believer.

They are easy, they don't take up much room, and they are lovely.  Both to look at and to eat.

tonight's dinner:  goat cheese, leek, tomato and zucchini galette. 

I'm going out of my way to look for leek recipes now :)

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  1. YES! Leeks are amazing, and a great way to extend the harvest well into the next year. I harvested my last 2010 leeks in June, to make room for something else!

    I just love them, they are so much tastier than onions, and don't make me cry. Try caramelized leeks on pizza... mmmmm

    Unfortunately this year, what with moving Dan's mom, I didn't start my leeks early enough. They are tiny tiny, but I'm hoping I can keep them going all winter. This serves as a good reminder to make them a priority, though.

  2. Yay! I love leeks...mainly because they'll just sit there, there's no rush to them. Reliably the Bleus make it through our winter if I mulch them with straw...I only lose a few of the smaller ones.

    And leek galette is probably my favorite dish with them. Yum.

    Ali, your leeks will probably be fine, growing out to whatever size they'll get when the snow falls. You can try digging a few completely out w/dirtball attached and transferring them to your greenhouse.

  3. Leeks are a must-grow vegetable for me, too. To my mind, they're one of the "secret ingredients" in great French cooking from a humble country potage to Michelin-starred fare. Can't imagine my kitchen without them.


  4. Ali: yep, I planted my first ones last fall, and though small by winter they survived under a low hoop. I think yours will do fine.

    El, yes, I love a veggie that does not scream to be eaten before it goes to waste, especially this time of year when there's lots of competition in that regard and only so many meals to make in a week!

    Brett: I saw your note about commenting problems, sorry! I have trouble on one computer too, same browser but my comments disappear--only on my blog strangely. I thought it was just me! I will look at my settings (sigh).


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