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Sun Feb 28, 2021, 02:00 AM

So I was wondering -- why leeks ?

I have a recipe for sweet potato soup that I like, but it requires starting with a leek. Classic leek and potato soup and cock-a-leekie also require leeks. But, aside from the pun potential, why leeks ? Won't something else work ? After Googling for answers, I came across this Web page: https://www.thespruceeats.com/leek-equivalents-measures-and-substitutions-1807468 Since I can't buy leeks at the store where I prefer to buy groceries, AND they're usually sold in bundles of three, I thought I'd try the suggestion of mild onions as a replacement. Strangely, the recipe I use includes leek, onion, celery, and even garlic, and after reading the substitution suggestions leek sounds almost absurdly redundant, so after this trio of leeks is gone I'm trying it leekless. Any better suggestions ? Warnings ?

(BTW, leeks come with a lot of the leaves attached, but I've never seen a recipe that doesn't discard them. Seems like a lot of waste, shipping all those leaves around the country/world when they're just discarded.)

(NB: Spellchecker can't handle "leekless". What slipshod quality!)

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Response to eppur_se_muova (Original post)

Sun Feb 28, 2021, 02:02 AM

1. A particular, subtle, interesting flavor,

but onion, celery and garlic might do.

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Response to eppur_se_muova (Original post)

Sun Feb 28, 2021, 02:06 AM

2. I make onion soup with 1 stalk of leeks, along with Onions, green onions, scallions, and garlic

Soup tastes like onion.

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Response to eppur_se_muova (Original post)

Sun Feb 28, 2021, 02:19 AM

3. If you use only the white part of the leek and potatoe and cream it is vichyssoise

which is served cold and delicious. The iconic French soup. Sometimes when i make it there is only an inch of white (or pale green) on the leek and they are skinny, instead of three or 4 inches of white and thick, and i have to buy more leeks than normal. You should see that green waste 18 leeks makes. I wish i had a pig to feed it to. So bad my brother refuses to eat it if i can't find better leeks. He tried growing to see if he could do better but they were anemic. Vichyssoise is part of my dad's favourite meal at the picnic table outside his nursing home in the summer. Here is hoping we can do it this summer. And they have decent sized leeks. I make extra so friends can take some of the vichyssoise home with them.

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Response to applegrove (Reply #3)

Sun Feb 28, 2021, 02:26 AM

4. We're having unseasonably warm weather here, so I'll try vichyssoise !

Thanks for the reminder !

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Response to eppur_se_muova (Original post)

Sun Feb 28, 2021, 02:34 AM

5. Leeks impart a flavor that you just can't duplicate with anything else. It's indescribable,

you'll know it when you taste it. You can substitute onions and garlic, but it will completely change the flavor profile.

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Response to eppur_se_muova (Original post)

Sun Feb 28, 2021, 02:54 AM

6. It turns out you CAN eat the dark green part -- it just takes longer to cook and

(of course) has a slightly different taste than the paler parts. BTW you can clean and (I like to thinly slice whichever leftover part of the leek and store them in a plastic bag in the freezer.

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Response to fierywoman (Reply #6)

Sun Feb 28, 2021, 12:15 PM

9. Was gonna suggest this too!

Great minds....

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Response to AKwannabe (Reply #9)

Sun Feb 28, 2021, 03:54 PM

10. ...

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Response to eppur_se_muova (Original post)

Sun Feb 28, 2021, 10:08 AM

7. You take your leftover leek parts,

leftover asparagus parts, left over greens before they rot etc. and put them in the freezer. When you want to make a vegetable broth with newer stuff add the frozen stuff. Little waste that way.

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Response to cachukis (Reply #7)

Sun Feb 28, 2021, 12:06 PM

8. What a good idea. I hate throwing all those asparagus ends away. Never considered just

using them for stock.

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Response to eppur_se_muova (Original post)

Sun Feb 28, 2021, 08:53 PM

11. Leeks have a milder flavor than other onions except shallots

I've cooked without shalltots for years, the flavor never justifies the high price for me. Leeks, on the other hand, are a staple chez Warpy. While I've done potato soup with onion, it's just not the same, I can taste the difference and I miss the leeks. If I ever have any left over, I braise them, they're a wonderful vegetable. I also use them in vegetarian stocks and sauces where subtlety is required.

Around here they come in bunches of 1-4, the one being a real baseball bat of a leek.

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