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
Test Kitchen Notes
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
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.
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.