The tender leek. Scrub it clean, toss it into a hot pan with melted butter and olive oil, season with a little salt, pepper and nutmeg, then sizzle it with a dash of white wine and cover. Twenty or so minutes later, you have a soft, sweet vegetable that just wants you to love it.
I simply love the simple leek. And here we have a new way for me to love it. Adapted from a Smitten Kitchen recipe: bruschetta topped with softened leeks and smoky blue cheese – a wonderful appetizer that doubles as an entree with a simple salad.
I added wine and nutmeg to this dish and can’t wait to try it with goat cheese.
Leek and Blue Cheese Toasts
- 3 big leeks, sliced into half moons and rinsed well
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 tablespoon olive oil, plus extra for brushing toasts
- Coarse salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 1/4 c. dry white wine
- Pinch of fresh nutmeg
- 6 medium slices of sourdough bread or baguette
- 2 ounces blue cheese, crumbled
- Few drops of lemon juice (1/4 lemon)
Heat a large, heavy skillet over medium. Once hot, add butter and olive oil and add the leek slices. Sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt, a few grinds of black pepper and nutmeg. Add wine, then reduce heat to low, cover with a lid and cook until tender, about 20-30 min. Preheat broiler.
While leeks cook, brush bread slices with olive oil and sprinkle with coarse salt and pepper. Run under broiler until lightly toasted (next time, I’ll toast both sides). Divide leeks among toasts. Sprinkle with cheese, then run under broiler again until the cheese has just started to melt. Add a few drops of lemon juice.
My god, this is good. The leeks are buttery and have just the tiniest bit of onion flavor; the perfect base for blue cheese crumbles.
Biting down, you first are hit by the blue cheese, then the leeks mellow everything out and the bread is just crunchy enough to hold everything together. Lovely.