My first LEEK!

Leek French Baby  While it may not impress many of you who grow leeks successfully, and probably have for years, I’m elated!  I finally grew and harvested a leek!  This was not my first attempt.  Last year, I seeded some “American Flag” leeks, and a few germinated, grew terribly slow, were transplanted into the potager, and never became much bigger than pencils.

After studying seed catalogs over the winter, I selected this variety for another try.  Leek French  I’ve always had good luck with Renee Shepherd’s seeds, and this smaller, quicker leek seemed the best option.  Only a pinch of seed was sown last March, because we don’t use a lot of leeks and this was just a test.  However, I think every seed germinated and quickly grew into a sturdy transplant.  Over the winter, I had watched an episode of “Lavender and Leeks” showing Katie planting leeks into her allotment.   (It’s my favorite You-Tube view, so check it out if you haven’t before.)  I’d always thought you had to dig a big trench, plant the leeks in the bottom and slowly fill it as they grew, rather like celery.  I’m sure that’s a standard method, but Katie just makes a deep dibble hole and sticks the transplant in.   So, that’s what I did, except I filled the hole around each transplant with good compost to offer more food.  There was more rain this year, and I think that helped as well.

The result was a patch of lovely, large leeks.  The leeks are actually larger than I expected, growing a good 2′ tall and 2″ in diameter.  Some are slightly larger, some are slightly smaller, but I’m happy with them all.  The first one harvested (shown above) provided 10″ of usable, deliciousness and was turned into a tasty traditional leek-potato soup.  Leek soup  We had eaten all but this last little bit before I remember to take a photo!  There are still several leeks left, so I’m open to ideas for other ways to use my wonderful crop.   Next, I’m making the “Leek and Cod Gratin” from Georgeanne Brennan’s book “Potager, Fresh Garden Cooking in the French Style.”  Any other recipe suggestions?

About carolee

A former professional herb and lavender grower, now just growing for joy in my new potager. When I'm not in the garden, I'm in the kitchen, writing, or traveling to great gardens.
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15 Responses to My first LEEK!

  1. curioussteph says:

    This recipe is originally from the NY Times Bread and Soup cookbook. Its yummy and a family favorite. I use a whole egg instead of just the yolk and add more spinach, and think other greens would work as well. Congrats on your leek crop–I am impressed!


  2. Eeeh how exciting!!! 😀 Congrats aha! I haven’t tried leeks yet! Maybe next year! I failed with my onions, garlic and radishes this year! But succeeded with some beautiful baby carrots, cucumbers and bountiful rhubarb 😀 xo


    • carolee says:

      Congratulations on your many successful crops. Isn’t it fun to learn and build on your successes? I feel I gain insight with every season and trial. My rhubarb was a total bust this year….too much rain and rot. I’m going to move some clumps to higher ground for next year. Learning from my mistakes, striving for bigger, better…..Thanks for reading and responding with a comment!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. windsweptone says:

    What a fabulous looking leek! Well done. My chicken Mash Pie recipe takes a leek. Since I first made it up my family have insisted I make it EVERY Monday! I’ve been doing it every week for over a year now. It’s good though. 😃


  4. Over Soil says:

    Well done that person, well done indeed. We need more who will attempt, the planters, the growers and the ones who show it can be done. ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Yay! Well done. I’ve just made my raised beds so hopefully next year I can try to grow some leeks. We use ours in a basic bechamel sauce which we pour over chicken, bake with breadcrumbs on top and then serve with roasted julienne carrots and diced potatoes. Delicious 😋.


    • carolee says:

      Sounds delicious, and worth the effort. I’ll admit, I’ll have to look up bechamel….as much as I’ve cooked (since I was 8!) and as many recipes as I’ve invented for my books, that’s one I’ve never made!

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Cortney says:

    Congrats! The first of anything one grows is a big deal so I love that you are sharing your success with us so we can help celebrate! That soup looks AMAZING!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. That’s a leek right enough! Mine were wiped out by the unusually hot summer, while my onions did well for a change. I think the latter like good soil and lots of sun, while the leek thrives in more marginal areas with a cool wet climate – hence leeks are a staple in Wales where onions do poorly


  8. Luffy says:

    Slow baked leeks with a Parmesan cheese crust are one of my favourite ways to eat them


    • carolee says:

      I just made the Leek & cod gratin from “Potager” a book by Georgeanne Brennan, but added a grated potato and Japanese bread crumbs on top. It was delicious! Thanks for the suggestion, for reading, and taking the time to comment.


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