How to Prepare Leeks

Easily chop and rinse leeks to enjoy in your favorite recipes

Leeks are a member of the onion family, but with a milder flavor – they make a great addition to soups and stocks and are also good in stir fries and lots of other dishes. The only tricky thing about them is that the way they grow tends to cause little pieces of dirt to get stuck in the layers, so you want to rinse them pretty carefully unless you want to chew on sand. And if you want to chew on sand you should seek medical attention, I think. But who am I to judge, I’m pretty sure I used to eat sand when I was a kid. Moving on.

Thoroughly rinsing the leeks is easy with the assistance of a small strainer. Just chop off the bottom and the dark green part of the leek:

Then slice it lengthwise down the middle, hold the pieces together, and chop it into slices that are maybe 1/2 inch thick (this mostly just depends on how thick you want them for your dish). You’ll be left with a pile of little half-circle pieces.

Stick the pieces in a small strainer and rinse them under the faucet. The layers will fall apart from each other fairly easily, but you can also shake the strainer or stir them up with your hands if you want to make sure everything is rinsed well.

Shake the strainer to get rid of any excess water and your leeks are ready to add to whatever you’re cooking! If you want a finer dice you can also put them back on the cutting board and chop them up a bit. Does anyone have any favorite leek recipes they enjoy?

3 Comments

  • This is so clever! I always rinse the leeks *before* chopping. My aunt taught me to hold the leek with the green leafy bit facing down, run it under water, and scrub in between the leaves with my fingers. I think your method is more thorough though! I love leeks although I haven’t had them in months (you can’t get them in Bangaldesh!) – one of my favorite recipes is leek & potato soup 🙂

  • Seriously. All these tips are life changers for me! When we cook together my sisters and mom, still to this day (we’re all adults!), tease me because it takes me hours to cut and chop stuff. Usually they get so frustrated that they put me on table setting duty 🙁 So thank you!

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