Posted: Feb 04 2015
We love revisiting classic recipes, especially those that shift the focus onto often over-looked vegetables. Leeks Vinaigrette is an historic French preparation for the largest member of the allium family. Buy an extra pound or two the next time you can find mature leeks at your local market. The egg and bacon bump this from side dish to a light main, especially with a glass of chilly, white wine.
2 pounds leeks (about 8)
3 strips of uncured bacon
¼ cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil, divided
2 tbsp white wine vinegar
1 tbsp Dijon or Horseradish Mustard
1 tsp honey
2 tbsp chopped, fresh parsley
In a small bowl, whisk together 3 tbsp of the olive oil, vinegar, mustard, and honey. Season with salt and pepper and adjust as needed. Set aside.
Prepare an ice bath. Clean the leeks by trimming off the darkest green parts of the leaves, slicing off the roots, and splitting the leeks lengthwise (partway through) starting an inch from the root end. Fan open the leeks and rinse under cold water to remove any dirt or sediment. Shake dry and bundle two groups of four together with kitchen twine. Place in a wide saucepan large enough to accommodate the length of the leeks, cover with cold water, add the two eggs to hard-boil, season the water liberally with salt and place over medium heat. Bring to a simmer and braise, uncovered for 10-15 minutes or until a paring knife slips easily in and out of the leeks. Remove, drain gently and immediately move leeks and eggs to an ice bath.
While the leeks and eggs are cooling, cook the bacon until crisp. Drain and cool on kitchen towels, chop roughly and set aside while you make the vinaigrette.
Dry the leeks briefly on a kitchen towel. Add the remaining tbsp. olive oil to the dry sauce pan over low heat. Add the leeks in one layer and cook, rotating until lightly browned and warmed through. While the leeks cook, peel and finely chop the egg. When the leeks are just beginning to color, transfer them to a platter, dress with vinaigrette, then scatter over bacon, eggs and finish with fresh chopped parsley. Serve warm, with a light, semi-dry white wine such as Verementino.