Seared Leeks and Shaved Cheese With Greek Currants or Prunes
I hope you enjoy this Greek recipe from my last book, My Greek Table. It’s a great paean to the versatility of vegetables in the Greek and Mediterranean Diet. What I love most about this dish is its simple elegance. The recipe below is an adaptation of an old Macedonian dish which called for wild onion or leek stalks.
- 6 large leeks
- 6 tablespoons extra virgin Greek olive oil divided, plus extra for brushing the grill
- Greek sea salt to taste
- Freshly ground black pepper to taste
- 1 tablespoon fresh strained lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons Greek or other balsamic vinegar
- 4 pitted prunes finely chopped, or 2 tablespoons Corinthian currants
- Grated zest of 1 lemon
- 5 ounces / 150 gr. kasseri kefalotyri, or aged myzithra cheese, or any sharp sheep’s milk cheese, such as pecorino
Trim the leek roots and cut off and discard the tough green ends. Cut the leeks in half lengthwise and rinse thoroughly under cold water to wash away any sand.
Bring an inch of water to a boil in the bottom of a pot or steamer. Place the leeks in the steamer basket and steam for 10 minutes. Transfer to a bowl, and toss with half the olive oil and salt and pepper to taste.
While the leeks are steaming, whisk together the remaining olive oil, balsamic, chopped prunes or currants, lemon zest, salt and pepper.
Light the grill to medium or place a grill pan on the stovetop and brush lightly with a little olive oil. Grill or sear the steamed leeks for 5 to 8 minutes, turning often with kitchen tongs, just until grill marks appear. Remove from the heat and place on a serving platter. Drizzle with the prune/currant dressing and garnish with shaved cheese. Serve.