Friday, May 9, 2014

FFwD - Leeks Vinaigrette with Mimosa


Today´s recipe for the French Fridays with Dorie group is “Leeks Vinaigrette with Mimosa” (in French “poireaux vinaigrette mimosa”) – a classic French recipe that consists of a plate of tender leeks generously bathed in a vinaigrette.




Traditionally a first course, this lovely leek recipe with eggs is partly named after the edible yellow mimosa flower, which the color of the sieved egg yolk is said to resemble. This is a simple, colorful and fresh tasting dish that would make a fantastic light lunch accompanied by a slice of homemade bread, as well as an attractive starter for a dinner party or a remarkable dish for the weekend - we enjoyed it as a side dish with roast chicken for a wonderful weekday late lunch.




A member of the onion family, the leek is a versatile spring vegetable that, chopped and combined with carrot, celery and onion, makes a great base for soups or stews. Its mild, sweet flavor also partners well with butter and cream in sauces, soufflés and gratins. Only the white part of leeks is cooked – you should trim away the tough, woody stalk end and try to use the green leaves to wrap the contents of a bouquet garni.

According to Dorie´s recipe, you will need the following ingredients- some young leek, a hard boiled egg, Dijon mustard, sherry vinegar, walnut oil, extra-virgin olive oil, fine sea salt, freshly ground black pepper. To that I added finely chopped parsley, chervil, and chives. I like these three herbs with “anything mimosa” that I prepare – I make a lot of “asparagus mimosa” and always add them, so I did the same here. Habit and great taste.

To prepare the leeks, you will have to remove any tough outer parts of the leeks then wash them thoroughly in cold water. Then pour water into a pan large enough to hold the leeks, adding salt. Bring to the boil then cook the leeks for about 15 minutes. Check if the leeks are tender by inserting a small, sharp knife through the center then remove from the water and place on a wire rack set over a plate to drain and cool slightly. To make the vinaigrette you separate the cooked yolks from the eggs and push through a sieve into a small bowl. Finely chop the egg whites then add to the yolk along with the herbs.
Using a small whisk, mix the vinegar, mustard and oils, and seasoning with a little salt and fresh ground pepper. Arrange the warm leeks on a nice serving plate, cover them evenly with the eggs and then spoon the vinaigrette over the top. If possible, serve right away while still lukewarm - in our humble opinion that´s when this dish tastes its best..




The secret to this tasty leek dish is to blanch the leeks until they are all tender before you go ahead and then dress them in a tangy vinaigrette that compliments the wonderful sweetness of the young spring leek. We all loved this recipe – really loved it, but then, we love just about any fresh vegetable prepared this way.

To see how much the other members of the French Fridays with Dorie group enjoyed today´s recipe, please click here.

As a group we do not publish the recipe but if are lucky enough to own Dorie Greenspan´s book “Around my French Table”, you will find the recipe for ”Leeks Vinaigrette with Mimosa" on page 111.




52 comments:

  1. Your photos are so beautiful! And thanks for the explanation of where mimosa got its name.

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    1. Beth, you are quite welcome - and thank you for stopping by to let me know that you enjoy the pictures!

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  2. I love, love, love leeks. They have such a delicate onion flavour and never leave you with offensive breath.
    My grandmother would blanch them, then marinade them in a bit of salt & lemon juice. Delicious.
    Wishing you a lovely Mother's Day, Andrea! xo

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    1. Colette, yes, leeks are a bit of the underdog of vegetables aren´t they but they turn unbelievably sweet when prepared this way and the nice dressing is a tangy partner to these veg.
      Hope you had a wonderful Mother´s Day as well, my friend!

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  3. Beautifully done, Andrea! Glad this was enjoyed by all! I thought it was a winner too! Lovely presentation and photos! Happy Mother’s day!

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    1. Kathy, hope you had a wonderful Mother´s DAy too! And how nice to learn that you really enjoyed this wonderful recipe as well!

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  4. Yes great photos. You managed to make leeks look good.

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  5. I love that you added herbs! A spectacular suggestion!!!

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    1. Thank you Liz, what would a spring dish be without all those lovely herbs?1

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  6. I think you did the best job. But, um...if you look away I'm likely to steal that wood handled fork and knife set. I sieve the eggs too and wondered why Dorie didn't mention that in her notes.

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    1. Trevor, thank you kindly! The fork and knife (I have a total of six sets) were a real find and I love them dearly - the handles are bone though and I do use them only once in a while - I would not be surprised of they disappeared one day!

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  7. Your photographs are stunning this week, Andrea. I, of course, had never put mimosa and an hard-boiled egg garnish together. To we Americans, mimosa means champagne and orange juice! Another lovely post from The Kitchen Lioness. Well done.

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    1. Dear Mary, to me "mimosa" never meant anything but this kind of dish or that lovely flowering plant - love to learn all the time! Thank you so much for the kind comment my friend!

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  8. That last photo is incredibly delicious looking! Love, love, love! When I read the title of this post, I thought these were served with Champagne and orange juice! Love leaks. I have this book - will need to remember this recipe. Have a very happy mother's day, Andrea!

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    1. Cathleen, hope you enjoyed your Mother´s Day as well! And thank you for your very kind comment! This is certainly one lovely recipe to try with young spring leeks!

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  9. Very lovely.

    This week's recipe was an education for me - I didn't know there was a flower called mimosa As others noted, I was wondering where the champagne and orange juice were going to fit in :-)
    Have a lovely weekend.

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    1. Cher, the champagne and orange juice never crossed my mind...to me mimosa is a flower or any dish prepared this way - guess I do not prepare that many drinks...thank you for stopping by!

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  10. I am glad to see you make Asparagus Mimosa, too! It was a favorite of mine as a child when we grew our own asparagus. I must try it with leeks. The leeks grown here in Arizona tend to be smaller and, thus, perfect for this recipe. I love that you add chervil. No one here uses it much and it adds such a lovely flavor! My favorite photo is the one where you use the bakery string to tie together the fork and knife. Your photos are truly ausgezeichnet! Liebe Grüße! ~ David

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    1. Lieber David, now I am jealous, you grew your own asparagus...dear, not us...and yes, at first when I reda this recipe, I veered straight towards the asparagus mimosa until I realized that this recipe called for young leeks! But I am glad that I noticed on time - we loved, loved this recipe!
      Lieben Dank mein Freund für deinen tollen Kommentar!
      Und ganz herzliche Grüße an euch beide von uns allen!
      Andrea

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  11. Leeks are so good, and here in America we don't use them that much. You have really hit it out of the park with this one. Beautiful!

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    1. Adri, so very kind of you - leeks are quite the treat when enjoyed this way!

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  12. Who could make leeks look so pretty other than you Andrea? Looks like a wonderful lunch even on it's own! I have some leeks growing right now, I'll have to remember this when they're ready to harvest :) Happy Mother's Day!

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    1. Chris, now that is a comment! Thank you so much - leeks are sooo unphotogenic - you do not want to know how many shots were necessary for this post - let´s just say,"quite a few"...
      Hope you had a smashing Mother´s Day, dear friend!

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  13. Great job Andrea! I only tried the vinaigrette and it was amazing! Have wonderful weekend!

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    1. Maria, thank you - a wonderful dressing isn´t it?!

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  14. I will try this with asparagus, once it's in season here. I can imagine that being just as delicious. Do you grow mimosa (the flowering tree)? Have a great weekend, Andrea.

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    1. Betsy, unfortunately I have no mimosa growing in our garden but they are pretty popular (flowering) plants around here - this "mimosa" style vinaigrette is absolutely wonderful with green as well as white asparagus - you will love it once you try it!

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  15. interesting, my sian licking like pickled sping onion and i guess i won't have a problem with this leeks vinaigrette....

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  16. So beautiful, Andrea! They look wonderful and so luscious! I love anything oniony and these with the mimosa treatment and vinaigrette are lovely!! Here n the US today, it's Mothers Day, wishing you a very happy Mother's Day, any friend xx

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    1. Nazneen, these leeks are quite a treat when prepared this way - who would have thought they they turn into such sweet and utterly delightful treats...thank you so much for stopping by!
      Hope you had a smashing Mother´s Day my dear!

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  17. THis is absolutely gorgeous Andrea - so spring-like!

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    1. Merci beaucoup, chère Mardi! It is really springtime weather around here and nature is quite inspiring!

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  18. These look beautiful Andrea!. I love leeks but confess they are always in the background of the meal - you have made them the star! I will definitely have to try this.

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    1. Karen, leeks are not always the first vegetables that I pick at the green grocers either but ever snce I have started in dishes other than stews and soups, I have been extremly pleased with the way they can taste as side dishes or main stars of a vegetarian dish.

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  19. Leeks just scream Spring to me. These look so delicious. Perfect for a simple afternoon meal. Thank you for sharing. Lovely as always!

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    1. Monet, young, tender leeks are very much a spring vegetable and it is always nice to find new yet traditional ways to serve them and make all the taste testers happy!

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  20. This is definitely something new to me! Well, I am not that familiar with French cuisine which explains why, but I like the creative combination of leeks and mimosa. The final dish looks very pretty too :).

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    1. Thank you very much my dear, this classic French dish will certainly make a repeat performance at our house - we loved the combination of the fresh spring leeks with the mimosa vinaigrette.

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  21. Dear Andrea, your blog is so beautiful....feel we can always come to it and learn something culinary,something new and absolutely delicious....could have never thought of using sieved eggs which resemble mimosa flowers...so innovative, we are all excited to try this out,thanks so much for the inspiration...Have A Great Day!!! :-)

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    1. Kumar, thank you so much! Comments like yours are like balm for my blogger´s soul!

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  22. Hi Andrea, what a wonderful way to prepare leeks, you have made them the star of the show. Love recipes like this when something ordinary becomes something extraordinary. Beautiful pics!

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    1. Cheri, you are right, who would have thought that a humble vegetable like the leek could taste this great when prepared this way?! Thank you for the kind comment!

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  23. Hi Andrea!
    Thank you so much for your kind comments, I am always pleased to receive your visit :)
    Everything is going great in München, waiting for nicer days to come for a barbecue in one of the city parks!
    I found this leeks recipe quite curious, I had never seen them cooked like this. Maybe it is something new to try in the next days, since it looks perfect for spring - even though here in München feels more like Autumn now!
    I have been searching for asparagus recipes from Portugal... but I guess that in the end they are not a traditional ingredient, so there are not any traditional dishes with them! In fact, I think I ate fresh (white ;) ) asparagus for the first time here in München. I always thought I didn't quite like them because I had only tried the bottled ones.
    Viele liebe Grüße aus München,
    Inês

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    1. Dear Inês, thank you so very much for taking the time to look up Portugese recipes for asparagus - I certainly appreciate the time and effort that you put into that. I could not find anything either - I guess that just means that asparagus gets eaten more in countries like the Netherlands, Belgium, France, Germany and the UK. Now you can enjoy fresh asparagus while in Munich though...
      I am so gald to read that all is well and you are happy to be studying in beautiful München! Always wonderful to hear from you.
      Noch mehr liebe Grüße aus Bonn,
      Andrea

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  24. I've never seen leeks cooked like this before and boy! That looks absolutely delicious.

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    1. Thank you, dear Trishie - leeks turn amazingly sweet when prepared this way!

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  25. Hi Andrea, I think your leeks look delicious and soft, so good with some bread on the side…yummy indeed!

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    1. Jeannie, this was a nice side dish for roast chicken the day I prepared it but I am planning on making this dish part of my next Mediterranean spread.

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  26. I love the idea of using the green part of the leek to tie a bouquet garni. How resourceful, and pretty!

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    1. Thank you, Jora, hate to throw anything out and there is onl yso much vegetable stock that I can can make using every last bit of the leeks.

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