Food & Home - - Culinary Travel -

In Ge­or­gia the thin, wild leeks that are for­aged in spring are one of the year’s most prized foods (see be­low). They’re served in many ways, in­clud­ing with wal­nut paste. In the ab­sence of the wild ver­sion, here’s an easy and de­li­cious way to bring winter leeks to life: just blanch them and toss with the paste. Make sure your leeks are well cleaned of any sand by soak­ing them

in a large bowl of cold water for 10 min­utes be­fore cook­ing. Use the green and white parts of the leeks. Make a cut length­wise along each leek, cut­ting only to the cen­tre. Then cut them cross­wise into 2-cm / 1-in slices.

SERVES 4–6 at a supra PREPA­RA­TION 15 min­utes COOK 5 min­utes

400 g /14 oz / 31/2 cups sliced leeks (see notes above) 40 g / 11/2 oz / 3 tbsp wal­nut paste [see recipe on pre­vi­ous page] 2 tbsp water 1 tbsp finely chopped fresh co­rian­der / cilantro chilli / red pep­per flakes, op­tional salt and freshly ground black pep­per  

Bring a medium saucepan of water to the boil. Drop the leeks into it and boil for 5 min­utes, un­til the leeks are just soft. Drain over a bowl to catch the cook­ing water (use it in a soup or stew). Let the leeks cool in the strainer or colan­der.

In a cup, mix the wal­nut paste with the water and stir well for a minute or two (this will help re­lease the wal­nuts’ flavour). Add the fresh co­rian­der.

Turn the cool leeks into a serving bowl. Stir in the paste and mix well. Taste for sea­son­ing, adding a pinch of op­tional chilli flakes, salt and pep­per to taste.


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