Thursday, June 24, 2010

Recipe: Chicken with Leeks

My mother joined a CSA this year, and got to pick up her first box last week. She said it was the never-ending box of produce and they would certainly be sharing. No complaints here. One of this weeks treasures was a group of leeks. Leeks are super yummy. Stinky reacts to onions, so leeks can be a good substitute when a recipe calls for them. This chicken dish is one of my favorite ways to use them, and I find that it impresses people with very little real work.

You'll need:
2 leeks
2 chicken breasts
canola oil (or other cooking oil of your choice)
1 can or 1/2 a carton chicken broth
1/4 cup ricotta cheese
salt and pepper

The first step is to pretend that my stovetop and counters were totally clean when I took these pictures, and that the lighting didn't suck. Okay, we're ready to go.

To prep your leeks, chop off the bottom and top, from where the leeks turn a darker green. take the centers and slice them into 1/4-1/3 inch rounds. Seperate the rings out and soak for at least half an hour. This frees up any dirt that might be lurking inside the rings. It reminds me a little of kalamari, only I'm not grossed out by them.
While they soak, slice your chicken breasts on the diagonal and season with salt and pepper. (While I think leeks are milder than onions, they still have a strong flavor, and you don't want too many other flavors competing. )

Drain the water, heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a pan over medium high heat. Sautee for 3-4 minutes, or until the rings soften. See two pictures down for how they should look.

Take leeks out of the pan, and add your chicken slices (no picture, because raw chicken isn't pretty). Once cooked through, add the leeks to the top of chicken.
Pour in chicken broth until your leeks float- either one can or 1/2 a carton. Turn up heat to high to reduce, just long enough to load your dishwasher.

Turn off heat then add the ricotta cheese in spoonfuls throughout the pan. Stir until mixed evenly. You may be able to get a similar result with cream cheese, but I needed to use up my ricotta.
Turn up heat if necessary to acheive desired consistency on your sauce. Serve over pasta, or with mashed potatoes. Either way is super yummy. We added a side salad with dinner.

That's it! It's super easy and takes about 20 minutes, but your don't have to tell anyone that part. This should serve four, but WBH didn't eat lunch today, so no leftovers this time. Enjoy!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I have never in my life had leeks. I'll have to try them, and this recipe sounds delightful.