Leeks Vinaigrette with Preserved Lemons and Pink Peppercorns

By • January 8, 2013 • 0 Comments

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Author Notes: A Parisian by birth living in the US for more than two decades now, leeks vinaigrette are my comfort food. I did put a twist on this traditional recipe one day when I found a jar of preserved lemons in the fridge and happily stumbled upon pink peppercorns as I was looking for something to brighten up the palegreen/pale yellow color.Gourmetphd

Serves 4

  • 3 leeks (thick are better)
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 2 tablespoons Champagne vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 4 tablespoons vegetable oil (oilve oil if you prefer)
  • 2 tablespoons preserved lemons chopped fine
  • 1 tablespoon pink peppercorns
  • Water
  1. In a large saucepan, put water to boil with 1/2 tsp salt.
  2. Wash the leeks: remove the dark green part and the root part, cut the leeks lengthwise in two, and then cut the leeks in two in the other direction. You should have leek pieces about 3 to 4 inches long. Wash them well in cold water to get rid of the dirt (which will fall to the bottom).
  3. Put the leeks in the boiling water and cook until tender when pierced with a knife, about 25 mns.
  4. While the leeks are cooking, prepare the vinaigrette. In a small bowl, whisk together the mustard, vinegar, remaining 1/2 tsp salt, pepper and oil (alternatively, you can prepare the vinaigrette in a small container with a tight fitting lid and shake the container to emulsify). Add the pink peppercorns, slightly bruised with the flat side of a knife, and the preserved lemon choppen fine. If you do not have preserved lemon, you could always make "quick preserved lemon" by slicing and cutting in small cubes 3 well washed organic lemons with the skin on, to which you add 1 tbsp of sugar and 1 tbsp of salt --let rest for at least 30 mns (or keep a jar of these in the fridge at all times), and voila!
  5. When the leeks are cooked, drain them very well. Then put them in a dish and douse them with half of the vinaigrette while still warm (they will absorb the vinaigrette flavor better that way).
  6. To serve: either you can serve them warm as a side dish (very nice with poached chicken, seared scallops, or steamed fish), or you can eat them cold as an appetizer. It will look nicer as an appetizer if you mold the leeks in a ring and then put drops of the remaining vinaigrette around.
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