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Leek Bacon and Gruyere Tart


This frenchy-french-french tart has the lusciousness of fall written all over it.  Spectacular for breakfast, brunch, lunch or dinner, it is also glorious with a crisp green salad.  And it freezes really well.  So with it almost taking as much work to make one as to make two, do just that and stock yourself with a fast food gift in your freezer for some bleak mid-winter eve.

This can of course be made vegetarian, and equally good, by omitting the bacon, and substituting two tablespoons of butter, for the bacon fat, for sauteing the leeks.



Leek Bacon and Gruyere Tart
by Catie Schwalb

makes one 9" tart.

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Technique Tuesday: How to Clean Leeks
 

 

[caption id="attachment_3026" align="aligncenter" width="640"]http://www.pitchforkdiaries.com/2011/10/18/technique-tues…o-clean-a-leek/ http://www.pitchforkdiaries.com/2011/10/18/technique-tues…o-clean-a-leek/[/caption]

Giant Musselburgh leeks from our garden.


Though the few nights of just dipping down to a frost have demolished most of the delicate summer produce in our gardens, this time of year signals that our leeks are starting to reach their sweetest.


Cousins of the onion, leeks too are many-layered, and because almost half of the plant grows underground, they have practically spoonfuls of dirt trapped in said layers.  Cleaning them, to avoid an off-putting little bite of grit in your meal, is critical and a bit of a trick.  However, it is also super simple and well worth the time for the reward of this gorgeous flavor-bomb available long into the winter.


HOW TO CLEAN A LEEK


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happyleekmonday.
 

FLUELLEN

I peseech you heartily, scurvy, lousy knave, at my
desires, and my requests, and my petitions, to eat,
look you, this leek: because, look you, you do not
love it, nor your affections and your appetites and
your digestions doo's not agree with it, I would
desire you to eat it.

PISTOL

Not for Cadwallader and all his goats.

FLUELLEN

There is one goat for you.

Strikes him

Will you be so good, scauld knave, as eat it?

PISTOL

Base Trojan, thou shalt die.

FLUELLEN

You say very true, scauld knave, when God's will is:
I will desire you to live in the mean time, and eat
your victuals: come, there is sauce for it.

Strikes him

You called me yesterday mountain-squire; but I will
make you to-day a squire of low degree. I pray you,
fall to: if you can mock a leek, you can eat a leek.

GOWER

Enough, captain: you have astonished him.

FLUELLEN

I say, I will make him eat some part of my leek, or
I will peat his pate four days. Bite, I pray you; it
is good for your green wound and your ploody coxcomb.

PISTOL

Must I bite?

FLUELLEN

Yes, certainly, and out of doubt and out of question
too, and ambiguities.

PISTOL

By this leek, I will most horribly revenge: I eat
and eat, I swear--

FLUELLEN

Eat, I pray you: will you have some more sauce to
your leek? there is not enough leek to swear by.

PISTOL

Quiet thy cudgel; thou dost see I eat.

FLUELLEN

Much good do you, scauld knave, heartily. Nay, pray
you, throw none away; the skin is good for your
broken coxcomb. When you take occasions to see leeks
hereafter, I pray you, mock at 'em; that is all.

PISTOL

Good.

FLUELLEN

Ay, leeks is good: hold you, there is a groat to
heal your pate.

PISTOL

Me a groat!

FLUELLEN

Yes, verily and in truth, you shall take it; or I
have another leek in my pocket, which you shall eat.




-William Shakespeare, Henry V, act 5, scene i


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{ welcome! }
Catie Baumer Schwalb is a chef, food writer and photographer, who splits her life between the city and the country. Not too long ago Catie was a New York City based actress and playwright for more than a decade. She has her Master of Fine Arts from the National Theater Conservatory, and her Grand Diplôme in classic culinary arts from the French Culinary Institute in New York City. ... Read More

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