Ham leek and cheese gratin

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Ham leek and cheese gratin
Ham leek and cheese gratin
Servings:Serves 2
Calories per serving:817
Ready in:15 minutes
Prep. time:15 minutes
Cook time:None
Difficulty:Easy
Recipe author:Chef
First published:30th September 2015
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Adding the final topping
Leeks rolled in ham, ready for the sauce

I always seem to let our leeks run to seed, by which time they are unusable. This year I'm making an effort to use them profusely. I've even deliberately run out of onions and just put a sign in the onion bowl: "USE LEEKS!"

This recipe is a simple way of combining leeks, cheese and ham into a gorgeous meal.

This was very tasty but one problem was the whole leeks. Although it looks nice, once soft they are very difficult to cut - in future I will slice them thinly and probably not par-boil first. 20 seconds in the microwave would be enough.

Ingredients

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Mise en place

  • Preheat the oven to 180° C (350° F - gas 4), [fan oven 160° C & reduce cooking time by 10 mins per hour]

Method

  1. Ensure the leeks are properly cleaned
  2. I've used small gratin dishes so had to halve them but you can leave them whole
  3. Boil the leeks in lightly salted water for about 8 minutes or until softened - they can also be microwaved, see below.
  4. Drain well.
  5. Meanwhile, to make the cheese sauce, melt the butter with a pinch of black pepper and stir in the flour once melted.
  6. Whisk the milk in and bring to a simmer, don't boil. Once simmering, whisk well, add 100 g of the Cheddar and once melted, remove from the heat.
  7. Roll the leeks in the cooked ham and lay in a lightly oiled gratin dish or shallow casserole.
  8. Pour the cheese sauce over the leeks.
  9. If you have the time, chilling the mixture in the gratin dishes (as pictured), solidifies the cheese sauce making it easier to add the topping, which has a tendency to sink into the hot sauce.
  10. Mix the breadcrumbs and any cheese you are using for the topping in a bowl and crumble well, maybe add a pinch of black pepper.
  11. Pour this mixture over the top and bake uncovered at the top of the oven at 180° C

Serving suggestions

A few tomatoes is all this dish needs to finish it off.

Variations

You could include a little pasta to stretch this dish even further.

Chef's notes

The leeks can be softened in the microwave, the advantage of this over boiling is that they keep their color.

Lay them on a plate and microwave on full power for 2 minutes.full power.

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