Tonight, I experimented with a new vegetable, well, new to me. Leeks. This member of the onion and garlic family is a low-calorie vegetable probably gets looked over at the store quite often, but I think I took a liking to it. It’s a good source of manganese, vitamin c, folate, and iron. I tried out an apple, leek, and butternut squash gratin.
After soaking and rinsing the leeks (1 bunch), I sliced the white part into small rings, sautéed them with an little EVOO & a couple of tablespoons of water. I didn’t let them get brown, I just softened them up. I used a splash of red wine to deglaze the pan.
Next, I peeled and sliced one butternut squash (ok, that part is a little time consuming). I layered them up in a baking dish and added some celtic sea salt and cracked pepper.
Next, I layered on the sauteed leeks, then I sliced & peeled 3 small gala apples and layered them on top. For next time, I will probably just use 2 apples. The sweetness of the butternut squash and apples was as a bit more than I expected.I sprinkled on some rubbed sage, cheese and bake about another 10 minutes, or until it is nice and golden brown.
Serve it up with some long grain rice (1 cup rice: 2 cups water for 50 minutes) and some of yourgrandmother’s canned green beans (thanks Nonnie)!
It may seem a little time consuming, but I LOVE being in the kitchen. It is my “out” at the end of the day, where I go if I am stressed, where I go if I am bored, and where I work out my creativity. There are great recipes out there that are a lot simpler and quick.
I am sure I will explore those eventually, but right now, I am enjoying the experiments.