UCHD, Protecting Your Health.


Recipe of the Week: Leeks (August 4, 2012)

Try a new recipe! The Wellness Consortium of Union County has partnered with Union County Farmer's Market to bring you information and healthy recipes that feature locally grown fruits and vegetables.


Vegetable  OF THE WEEK: Leeks

Leeks look like a giant scallion and are related to both garlic and the onion. Native to the Mediterranean region, this vegetable dates back to around 4000 BC. Although its flavor and fragrance are similar to its relatives, they are slightly sweet tasting and often served as a side dish.

Selection Leeks are found in markets year round with a peak during fall to early spring. Select leeks with clean white bottoms making sure that the ends are straight and not larger than 1 ½ inches in diameter, otherwise they will have a tough texture. The tops should be green, crisp and fresh-looking. Small to medium leeks (less than 1½ inches in diameter) are the tenderest.

Storage Refrigerate leeks, unwashed, in a loosely fitting plastic bag for up to one week. Storing leeks in plastic helps them hold onto moisture and keep the odor from spreading to other foods.

Preparation Leeks carry some dirt especially in between the layer of overlapping leaves. Begin cleaning by removing discolored leaves and trimming off green tops and root tips. Cut the leek lengthwise by inserting a knife from the base. Spread the leaves and rinse thoroughly. Placing the fanned out leaves in a bowl of water and gently moving the leaves will loosen any remaining dirt.

Leeks make excellent side dishes and appetizers but can also be added to many entrees including soups, stews, quiches, and salads.

This delicate vegetable cooks quickly and overcooking them will result in a slimy and soft product. In addition, they store heat well and will continue to cook even after the heat source is removed.

From http://www.fruitsandveggiesmatter.gov/month/leeks.html



mashed potatoes_with_Leeks_2012





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