Leek Gratin

Serve leeks baked with several cheeses and a bit of cream over flavorful pasta or rice for a rich and delicious treat. Creamy leek gratin
Yield 4-6 servings
Time 45 minutes
  • knife
  • frying pan
  • wooden spoon
  • large pot
  • colander
  • 8×12 baking dish or several small baking dishes
  • 4 large or 6 medium whole leeks, cleaned and sliced*
  • 1 T olive oil
  • ½ c sour cream or crème fraîche
  • ½ t salt
  • ½ t pepper
  • 1 t nutmeg
  • 3 T Parmesan cheese, grated
  • 1 oz bleu cheese, crumbled**
  • 2 c cheese, grated**
  • 3 T chives or green onions, chopped
Directions Slice the dark green parts of the leeks into ½-inch rounds, separate into rings, and set aside. Cut the white and light green into 2-inch pieces, and separate the layers.

Bring a pot of water to boil, add white and light green leeks, and boil until just tender, 2-3 minutes. Drain.

Meanwhile, heat oil in the frying pan over medium heat, add dark green leeks, and sauté, stirring frequently, until tender, about 10 minutes.

Preheat oven to 425.

Combine sour cream with salt, pepper, nutmeg, and Parmesan, and spread half of it over the bottom of the baking dish(es).

Arrange the dark green leeks on top, then cover with a third of the grated cheese and all the bleu. Add half of the white and light green leeks, then top with the rest of the cream. Add the another third of cheese, then the rest of the leeks, then the rest of the cheese, and top with chives.

Bake until golden brown and sizzling, about 10-15 minutes.

Serve as a thick sauce over whole wheat pasta or brown rice, or let it cool and then cut into pieces.

Notes *This recipe makes wonderful use of the dark green parts of the leeks – don’t throw them away!

**The original recipe calls for 6 oz of bleu cheese and 6 oz of something else, such as Gruyère, Comté, or Cantal. In my opinion, using these quantities would make it taste overwhelmingly of bleu cheese. I prefer just a hint of that particular flavor, so I only use a tiny bit of bleu and a mix of cheddar, comté, monterey jack, and/or gouda for the rest.

This recipe, originally called "Gratin of leeks with three cheeses and chives, or Gratin de poireaux aux trois fromages et ciboulette in French, is adapted from The Vegetarian Bistro: 250 authentic French regional recipes, by Marlena Spieler – read my review.

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Leek gratin