Buttery Braised Leeks with a Crispy Panko Topping

By • January 4, 2013 • 64 Comments

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Author Notes: This recipe keeps the beautiful vibrance of the leeks intact while the juice from the lemon brings a great balance and acidity to the dish. The topping is crispy and cheesy which is a perfect foil to the buttery texture of the leeks. This recipe serves as an appetizer but it would also be great blitzed into a dip or a topping for homemade pizza! amber wilson | for the love of the south

Food52 Review: WHO: for the love of the south is a food blogger who, clearly, has a way with leeks.
WHAT: A balanced, buttery side you'll want to eat all by itself.
HOW: Just brown, braise, bread, and serve!
WHY WE LOVE IT: You'd think a dish with "buttery" in the title would be overwhelmingly rich. You'd be wrong. Lemon and parsley don't let all of that butter steal the show -- they keep the whole dish in check. You'll need to keep going back for more, just to see how good these really are.
The Editors

Serves 2 as a side

Braised Leeks

  • 2 leeks, trimmed, cleaned, and halved lengthwise
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon of butter
  • Juice of 1/2 a lemon
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Crispy Panko Topping

  • 1/4 cup panko
  • 1 tablespoon parsley, finely chopped, leaves only
  • 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan
  • 1 pinch salt and pepper to taste
  1. Melt the butter and olive oil over a medium-high flame in a large sauté pan. Once the oil and butter are hot, place the leeks cut side down into the pan. Let the leeks brown in the pan for 4 to 5 minutes. Carefully flip the leeks over and turn the heat on low. Cover and let the leeks braise for about 25 to 30 minutes or until the leeks are soft all the way through. Take the leeks off the heat and squirt the lemon juice over the braised leeks and add salt and pepper to taste. Sprinkle with the panko topping.
  2. For the panko topping: Combine panko with parsley, Parmesan, and salt and pepper in a small dish. In a dry skillet over medium heat, toast this mixture until golden brown. Serve over the leeks. Make sure that you taste the panko mixture for correct seasonings to ensure that the dish is seasoned all the way through.
Jump to Comments (64)

Tags: braise, breadcrumbs, stovetop, Vegetables

Comments (64) Questions (0)

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4 months ago AXiu

Not my favourite way to make leek, but it tasted good. Next time I'll leave the panko topping to the side, as I didn't like how the topping lost its "crispness" after sprinkling on the lemon-covered leeks.

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9 months ago toddbob3

These were great! Fantastic recipe!

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9 months ago Juliebell

This is an easy and very delicious side to roasted meat or poultry. I had a bit of the panko mix left over and used it on roasted asperagus. Thanks for a real winner!

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9 months ago amber wilson | for the love of the south

Such a great idea! I will do that next time I have roasted veggies leftover! Thanks so much for sharing!
x
Amber

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9 months ago Shirl

Amber, this is one that a friend gave me that is delcious. We did love the leek recipe, too.
Breaded Asparagus (oven)
Ingredients:
1 pound asparagus, trimmed
1/2 cup flour
2 eggs, lightly beaten
3/4 cup panko breadcrumbs
1/4 cup grated parmesan
salt and pepper to taste
Directions:
Make sure the asparagus is pretty wet to get the flour to stick.
Dredge the asparagus in the flour, dip them in the egg and then into a mixture of the panko breadcrumbs,
parmesan, salt and pepper. Hubby and I did a fun assembly line. :D
Place the asparagus on a wire rack on a baking sheet and bake in a preheated 425 oven until golden brown,
about 7-13 minutes.
My hubby made a sauce by mixing mayonnaise, ketchup, and dijonaise.

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8 months ago amber wilson | for the love of the south

Shirl,
Thanks so much for this recipe! It looks wonderful and such a lovely dish to make with my favorite springtime veggies, asparagus!
x
Amber

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over 1 year ago Barie

WOW! This was absolutely divine. The lemon and the leek are soul mates! The panko/parm topping was delish - will make this again and again and again.

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over 1 year ago amber wilson | for the love of the south

So glad you loved the leeks! Thank you!

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over 1 year ago Shirl

This sounds divine. I love leeks and have them in the garden. One of my favorite recipes is a potato leek soup that I make frequently.

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over 1 year ago amber wilson | for the love of the south

Oh I hope you love it!

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over 1 year ago petitbleu

Making these tonight to go with leftover lamb shawarma. They smell amazing thus far! I cannot wait to bite into these!

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over 1 year ago amber wilson | for the love of the south

Oh that sounds like a lovely meal! Enjoy!

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over 1 year ago QueenOfGreen

This. Bubbly. And a movie. Perfect Friday night. Thank you!

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over 1 year ago amber wilson | for the love of the south

You're welcome! So glad you enjoyed the recipe!

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almost 2 years ago Boolene

Did not have any parsley. Used cilantro. Gave the leeks an Asian flare. Figured it would be okay with Panko and it was. Loved the simplicity. Great dish.

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almost 2 years ago amber wilson | for the love of the south

Oh I need to try the dish with cilantro and lime juice to substitute the parsley and lemon juice next time I make it! Great addition!

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almost 2 years ago chop chop

Made this for dinner. Delicious and simple.

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almost 2 years ago Sara from Ringingthedinnerbell.com

Made these last night - they're GREAT!

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almost 2 years ago amber wilson | for the love of the south

So happy you enjoyed them!

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almost 2 years ago Sara from Ringingthedinnerbell.com

Sooooo good!
Thank you!

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almost 2 years ago amber wilson | for the love of the south

It was my pleasure to share this recipe!

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almost 2 years ago ortolan

I just made these tonight!, they were wonderful Verdict: even if the technique as written doesn't sound like a braise, the end effect, if you will, definitely can be called "braised." One would never argue with the finished result. I served this with a romesco sauce I made earlier and the combination was utterly divine. I would add salt to the leeks while they were braising, as I didn't want to completely cover them with the bread crumb mixture to rely on the only seasonings.

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almost 2 years ago amber wilson | for the love of the south

Sounds like an awesome combination with a romesco sauce! Must try now...

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almost 2 years ago Summer of Eggplant

Congratulations!!!

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almost 2 years ago amber wilson | for the love of the south

Thank you so much!

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almost 2 years ago creamtea

Looks delicious!

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almost 2 years ago jifferb

MMMMMM! made these today and they are fantastic! And I thought they cooked perfectly, I wouldn't change a thing! Harvest Queen, maybe if you cooked them for the last 25 minutes at a lower temperature that would help. Thank you for the excellent recipe! And I am loving your blog!

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almost 2 years ago amber wilson | for the love of the south

I am so pleased that you liked the leeks! Thank you so much for the complement about my blog!

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almost 2 years ago dkkporter

I made this dish for my family and they LOVED it. It is incredibly easy to make, and the ordinarily humble leek turns into a decadent side to a grilled steak dinner. Thanks for sharing!

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almost 2 years ago amber wilson | for the love of the south

Oh I'm so glad that your family loved it!

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almost 2 years ago boulangere

Cynthia is a trusted source on Bread/Baking.

I had a feeling about this recipe as soon as you posted it. Warm congratulations on your win.

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almost 2 years ago amber wilson | for the love of the south

I appreciate the encouragement so much!

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almost 2 years ago boulangere

Cynthia is a trusted source on Bread/Baking.

;0)

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almost 2 years ago Kaitlyn R.

@HarvestQueen, if you know the definition of braise, you would know that the name is correct.

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almost 2 years ago amber wilson | for the love of the south

Well, that is kind, but everyone can have their say. If someone wants to call this recipe a steamed leek recipe, braised, smothered, browned... whatever they like, that's fine! As long as they love and appreciate the delicate care in which these beauties are cooked, that's all that matters!

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almost 2 years ago Harvest Queen

I agree with ortolan. The lemon is added at the end, not while the leeks are cooking; and in my case, some liquid would have helped the leeks cook better, without getting too crisp on the edges. We enjoyed the flavor combinations, but next time will add liquid and cook longer.

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almost 2 years ago amber wilson | for the love of the south

Well I'm glad that ya'll enjoyed the flavor combination! Tweaking recipes to fit your personal preference (or your family's preference!) is what I do as well. I enjoy the flavor of the browned leeks, but if you like them cooked down more, by all means add some liquid to that pan!

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almost 2 years ago Stephanie G.

YUM. I've always been a bit afraid of leeks, but I am totally conquering my fear with this recipe! So fun that you're a young, Southern food blogger—very best of luck!

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almost 2 years ago amber wilson | for the love of the south

Honestly, this is the first recipe I ever made with leeks and its so simple and easy to do! It took out that fear factor that you're talking about! I just thought of textures and flavors that I love together and this dish was the result!