How to clean leeks

April 4, 2016
by Trisha Learn

    It’s not great when you dig into your lovely, home cooked chicken, leek and tarragon stew and your first bite has that slightly gritty, slightly earthy texture.

    How to Clean your Leeks

    A lot of people shy away from leeks – despite the fact that they’re delicious, great value AND have a really lovely subtle flavour that works with so many things! WE LOVE A LEEK and we want you to feel that way too! Here are 4 easy steps to making sure your leeks are clean and chopped to perfection!

    1. Cut off the dark green part

    how to clean leeks


    2. Use the tip of a sharp knife to score both sides of the leek

    – not all the way through. But just so you can see all the layers
    how to clean leeks

    3. Hold the leek under a cold tap and stroke water into the folds to get rid of any grit or soil.

    how to clean leeks

    4. Using a sharp knife, hold the leek (as pictured) and thinly slice.

    how to cut a leek

    Then add it to stews, risottos, pasta sauces and so much more.

    Our top 3 leek recipes:

    1. Pea and Leek Risotto

    We’ve already discussed the perils of choosing the wrong pasta shape when an Italian comes to dinner, but this evening we’re covering risotto technique. Another source of lively dinnertime debate, Italians broadly fall into two camps: the flippers and the stirrers (our terminology not theirs). Some argue that a risotto must be constantly massaged to develop its creaminess, whilst others (the head chef at the Bulgari hotel in Milan for one) advocate flipping the rice in the pan whilst cooking. We’ve gone for stirring as there is less chance of covering the walls, but flip it if you dare!

    1. Pan-Fried Chicken with Creamy Leek and Porcini Lentils

    *Tap, tap, tap! Class! Please pay attention! We have a new pupil starting with us today – her name is Shannon and she will be known as our Nutrition Guru from now on. Shannon enjoys running on the beach, eating chia seeds and making the mysterious world of nutrition just that little bit easier to understand. Shannon recently did a blog on our site about the wonders of leeks, so today the canteen will be serving this delicious, nutrition-packed dinner in her honour.

    1. A Leek-y Fish Pie

    Got your own flock of sheep? Shepherd’s Pie. Own a thatched house in the countryside? Cottage Pie. It seems that everyone is getting in on the act these days*, so it’s only right that the fishermen have their place in the pie-related sun. We concocted this little number in close consultation with our fantastic fishmonger James Knight of Mayfair, who gave us the inside track from the dockside. Guaranteed to quell even the feistiest of dinnertime mutinies. *Watch this space for our leek filled ‘plumber’s pie’.


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