My twin sister, Mo, made these leek crostini a few years back for a family gathering at our parent’s house. I can remember being a little hesitant about her ingredients of choice, but was pleasantly surprised once I gave them a try! Fast forward a few years and so much has changed. Our parents sold our childhood home this past year and most of us have made the move out East. This was the first time spending Christmas away from most of our friends and family, including Mo. I was in charge of bringing an appetizer this year and found myself immediately thinking about the time in our parent’s kitchen back “home”making these leek crostini. It’s funny how food can bring back so many memories and almost take you back in time.
If you aren’t familiar with leeks, they are those vegetables that look like over-sized scallions. Leeks are a member of the Allium vegetable family which also includes onions and garlic. They are packed with phytonutrients and are a good source of Vitamins A, K, C and folate. Leeks have a unique flavor that is less harsh than onions, shallots and scallions which is why I enjoy them so much.
Leeks are really versatile too. You can use them pretty much whenever onion is called for. They’re best roasted, sautéed, or grilled and work well in stocks, soups, casseroles, and tarts.
Don’t like blue cheese? Neither do I, but something about this combination really works. If you can’t get yourself to try it, feel free to substitute with something like goat cheese or feta.
- 3 leeks
- 2 Tablespoons olive oil, plus extra for brushing toast
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 2oz blue cheese crumbled
- 12 thinly sliced pieces of baguette or bread of your choice
- Start by cleaning the leeks. Cut off the roots of the leeks and slice the leeks lengthwise.
- Slice the white and pale green parts ½ inch thick (discard the dark green parts as these can be pretty tough).
- Place the sliced leeks into a large bowl of cold water. Use your hands to agitate the leeks and dislodge any dirt or sand that may be clinging to them.
- Scoop the leeks out of the water with a slotted spoon and place in a new bowl or plate.
- Heat a large skillet over medium heat with 2 Tbsp olive oil. Add leeks, salt and pepper. Reduce heat to low and let leeks cook for 25-30 minutes, stirring them occasionally.
- While the leeks are cooking, brush bread slices with olive oil. Spread them on a baking sheet and toast in oven at 350 degrees for a few minutes until toasted to your liking.
- Divide leeks among the crostini. Crumble blue cheese on top and serve immediately.