Cut the roots and all of the tough
green tops off the leeks, leaving only the white and the most tender
Slice them in half lengthwise and
rinse, making sure to get any grit out.
In a large saucepan, heat the butter
or olive oil over medium heat.
Add the leeks and stir to coat.
Cook for about 5 minutes, then pour in
the water and add salt and pepper.
Cover loosely and simmer very gently
for 15-20 minutes, until the leeks are tender and most of the water
Braising is for vegetables that need an
extra bit of moist cooking that sautéing can't provide. Leeks,
radicchio, asparagus, celery, Belgian endive, fennel, carrots, and
others can be braised with excellent results and not a lot of prep work.
You can simply split and clean leeks and
endive, lightly chop Swiss chard and radicchio, leave asparagus whole,
halve stalks of celery, and cut fennel into slices.
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