Meat Free Monday – British Leek Lasagne

Meat Free Monday – British Leek Lasagne

brit-leeks-logo-green (1)

We’re celebrating the beginning of the British leek season which runs from November 1st through to April with a great recipe second only to Cauliflower, leeks are a fantastic winter British vegetable and as well as tasting delicious, they’re great for your health too. The leek is one British green that provides hearty dining. Not only full of flavour, leeks are packed with vitamins and crucial anti-oxidants, essential to helping you stave of winters colds and flu. I love them roasted, shredded raw in salads, with vinaigrette, with luxurious cheese sauce grilled till bubbling and in today’s recipe as one of the key ingredients in lasagna. If you are looking for an alternative to pasta then leeks are a fabulous alternative. If you make a cut along the leek lengthways then you have ready-made “lasagna” sheets. You can make it with meat but as it’s Monday we’ve opted for a meat free version.

 

Before we share our recipe, here some fun facts about Leeks.

  • The leek is widely recognised as the national symbol of Wales
  • In 640AD when fighting Saxon invaders Welsh soldiers wore leeks in their hats and subsequently gained a great victory
  • Emperor Nero was known as Porophagus (leek eater) because he believed eating leeks would help his singing voice
  • In the Middle Ages it was claimed young girls who slept with a leek under their pillow would see their future husband in their dreams
  • In traditional medicine, the leek is highly regarded as a cure for the common cold and for alleviating the pains of childbirth

 

To find out more about British Leeks please find some more information HERE 

Recipe

Ingredients

For the lasagna

2 leeks ( topped and tailed then cut lengthways and separated into sheets)

For the sauce

  • A glug of olive oil
  • 1 large red onion, finely diced
  • 2 medium-sized carrots, finely diced
  • 2 celery stalks, finely diced
  • 4 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 400g can of chopped tomatoes
  • 1 400g can of cannellini beans
  • 1 large glass of red wine
  • 100ml of vegetable stock
  • A large pinch of dried oregano
  • A few basil leaves wilted
  • Salt and pepper to taste

For the béchamel

  • 2 tbsp of white flour
  • A large knob of butter melted
  • 2 tbsp of white flour
  • A pinch of nutmeg
  • A glass of milk
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • A handful of grated Gruyère cheese
  • More grated Gruyère for the top

Method

Top and tail the leeks the cut lengthways. Separate the layers into sheets then blanche in boiling water for a couple of minutes then remove and place to one-side. In a large sauté pan add the olive oil and heat then add the garlic, onion, celery and carrot. Sauté until soften then add the tomatoes and wine and beans, stock, herbs and simmer until just cooked through. Check for seasoning. Whilst your sauce is simmering, make the béchamel. Simply add the butter and flour to a saucepan and as the two combine into a dough, start whisking in the milk until you have a thick sauce. If it gets too thick let it down with a bit more milk. Add the seasoning and cheese. whisk until you have a silky sauce then it’s time to assemble the dish. In a baking dish, add a layer or leek sheets, then some sauce then a layer of leek, some béchamel, then sauce. Carry on building your lasagna until you end up with a layer of béchamel sauce on the top. Add the remaining cheese, cover with foil, then pop in the oven for 40 minutes on 200c/Gas Mark 6 after 30 minutes remove the foil and let the cheese become brown and bubbling.

image2

 

image3

 

image4

 

image5

 

image6

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*

CommentLuv badge