March 09, 2010

The Leek's Tale

In case you haven't noticed by now, we have a lot of company here on the weekends.  Sometimes it's family, sometimes it's friends.  Sometimes it's locals, most times it's out-of-towners here for the long haul.

Regardless, I like to feed any person who shows up on my threshold yummy, fun to cook foods.  I also prefer to serve things that seem fancy and "bed and breakfast like" (if there is such a phrase), but that actually are a breeze to make.  Food such as...

Leek Tartlets (adapted from Colleen MacDonald, TOH, Oct/Nov '08)
(stay with me here as these were scrumptious!)

1 medium leek, chopped fine (I used our frozen CSA leeks.  They were already chopped, so I guesstimated and used 1C with green parts included)
1 minced garlic clove
3T butter
1/2C heavy whipping cream
1 package frozen phyllo tart shells (I had the phyllo sheets in the freezer and used those.  1 sleeve.)
2 oz. any cheese spread with a strong flavor (I used herb and garlic Rondale, but anything would do including a cream cheese flavored with herbs)   

 Saute the leek garlic and butter until tender (I added some bits of bacon because we had it on hand).  Add in cream, salt, pepper and nutmeg (to taste) and cook on medium heat until thickened.

Place tart shells on a baking sheet, or if using sheets, lay out full sheet and cut into 12 squares.  Then place each square staggered in 12 muffin tins so that there is overlap on the bottom.  I just divided each square in two and then plop plopped 'em.

Top each with a dollop of cheese spread and then equally spread leek mixture among the phyllo shells.

Bake at 350* for 6-8 minutes or until browned.

End result was spectacular to look at AND eat.  They were perfect little finger foods and went awesome with the soup we were having for lunch.  

The best part?  That I was able to use one of our lesser loved veggies and turn it into a rock star!

"Well loved he garleek, onyons and eek lekes,
and for to drink strong wyn, reed as blood;
than wolde he speke and crie as he were wood."
- excerpt from "The Summoner's Tale", from Chaucer's "Cantebury Tales"

(I'm a sucker for Chaucer- was assigned to read all of "Cantebury Tales" in college and fell in love with it; especially how the Middle English just flows right along)


Colleen said...

I want to eat those. I'm pretty sure I could be to your house in under 10 hours. I'll let you know when I hit the road! :)

Pam said...

A the risk of yet another cookbook -
Breakfast in Bed by Carol Frieberg .............
love leeks, latest favorites are kale and swiss chard.
And Colleen, I can be there in 5 hours, I'll save you some tartlets!
Love ya T.J.!

Aimee said...

I love leeks and those tartlets look fabulous! I have a killer potato leek soup recipe that I make -- I have to restrain myself from eating the entire pot :)

T.J. said...

I love hearing there are other leek fans out there! Woo Hoo! And Colleen and Pam- come on over- I'll make another batch of tartlets and wait up for the two of ya ;)

Confessions From A Working Mom said...

I don't have a clue where you live... but if you like to feed people who show up on your doorstep food like that, then I am going to be paying you a visit very soon!!!

Confessions From A Working Mom

Leslie said...

this looks so yummy...i wish i could drop by your house and try those out!!!

Darlene said...

Those look and sound DELICIOUS!! I have never tried cooking with leeks. Hope you are enjoying your day.♥

blueviolet said...

I have never in my life heard of this! I'm so intrigued!! Both with the recipe and with visiting you so I can be fed!

Christy said...

I am now hungry!!! I will be trying this!! Thank you for sharing :)

alita said...

Ya know- I have never had a leek in my life. Maybe it is the name LEEK. It just sounds so, i dunno, leeky. What do they taste like? Are they like turnips? I'm not a fan of turnips. Uh-oh my inner veggie snob is starting rear up my nose.

But those tarts look so very good. Maybe I'll just have to try the recipe first before I proclaim to hate on the Leek.

I, too love Chaucer. I had Major British Authors in HS and it was one of my favorite classes. I never quite got around to reading more when I was in college though. I love more tortured writing (think Poe, Hawthrone, Rilke, and H.P Lovecraft for example.)

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