Roasted and Braised Leeks
Prep: 15 minutes
Cook: 45-55 minutes
Makes: 4 servings
12 medium leeks
6 Tbsp. melted butter
3 Tbsp. olive oil
2 cups hot chicken broth (preferably homemade) plus up to 1 1/2 cups additional
1. Clean: Trim away the root frills from each leek. Trim away the dark-green leaves, leaving the white and pale green portions. Starting at the leaf-end, slice the leek in half, stopping 3 inches from the root-end. Fan the layers of the leaf-end under cool running water to rinse away the dirt and grit that all leeks harbor.
2. Arrange: Choose a roasting pan that will offer your leeks a snug fit in a single layer. A 13-by-9-by-2-inch pan (the sort handy for lasagna) should do. Swirl the butter and oil in the pan. Settle in the clean leeks.
3. Roast: Slide pan into a 500-degree oven and roast, 15 minutes. Pull out pan. Use tongs to turn over each leek. Roast, 7 minutes. Pull out pan, and turn leeks. Pour in 2 cups broth. Roast, 10 minutes. Turn leeks. Roast, 10 minutes. If you started with leeks fatter than 1-inch in diameter, pour in another 1/2 cup broth and roast 10 more minutes.
4. Serve: If you’re working ahead, let leeks cool. At serving time, pour in an additional 1 cup broth and heat at 500 degrees for 10 minutes. Either way, lift leeks out of their braising bath. Sprinkle with salt. Serve warm.
Provenance: Adapted from “Roasting: A Simple Art” by Barbara Kafka, by way of my friend Pam.