I’ve always thought crumbles were meant to be desserts – as they certainly are – but I had to change my mind when I read on the web about the existence of savory crumbles, that is the salted version of traditional crumble desserts. Of course, why hadn’t I thought of it myself? You just need to add some salt to the topping instead of sugar and substitute the fruit with vegetables (but also meat or fish) and voilà! Les jeux sont fait! Surely, as I am so fond of crumbles, I couldn’t help trying to make my own version of this savory dish which I filled with a combination of leeks and sunchokes. Sunchokes (also called Jerusalem artichokes, sunroot or topinambur) are a novelty to me: I had heard about them but I had never tasted them. So, when I found them at the market, I bought some still uncertain about what to make of them. Sunchokes are vegetable roots, or tubers, similar to potatoes but with a taste closer to artichokes, though more delicate. They match perfectly with leek and, thanks to their dainty texture, to the crispness of a crumble topping.
This crumble is great if served with a yoghurt sauce made with Greek yoghurt and chive. —Rita Banci
For the crumble: topping and filling
lightly salted butter, cut into small pieces
In a large saucepan pour oil and fry the shallot and garlic over a gentle heat for 1-2 minutes till golden. Remove garlic and add leeks and sunchokes. Cook for about 5 minutes, then pour in the vegetable stock and let it simmer covered, stirring now and then, for about 20-25 minutes or until sunchokes are tender. Salt and pepper to taste.
Prepare the topping. In a bowl combine flour, breadcrumbs and parmesan. Rub the butter into the mixture with your fingertips, then stir in chive and parsley. Salt and pepper to taste.
Place the leaks and sunchokes into a baking dish together with their cooking liquid. Drizzle some oil and cover with the crumble topping. Bake for about 30 minutes, until the top is golden.
In the meantime, prepare the yoghurt sauce. In a small bowl combine the Greek yoghurt, chive, salt and pepper. Pour in milk and oil and stir well. Keep refrigerated till it’s served.
I'm a professional textile conservator with a strong passion for cooking, gardening, drawing and writing. Since my baby boy was born in May 2010, I feel so much more enthusiastic about life and creativity. That's why I decided to create my own blog, after so many years spent checking out those of other food bloggers. And though time is never enough (being a mother and a wife is really demanding!!) I keep on cooking for my beloved husband and taking care of my garden with all the love and patience I have.