Spanish Cooking—The Leek

I’m the least-picky person in the world. Okay, almost.

I’m a fan of olives and onions and cilantro and tofu and brussels sprouts and stinky cheese. I still reserve my right to hate all types of melon, but only because (to me!) it tastes watered down, and there’s nothing worse than watered-down flavor.


Enter Leeks

And so, being the not-so-picky person that I am, I love leeks. Good thing too: leeks are an essential part of Spanish cooking. Leeks play an essential part in many Spanish dishes: soups (recipes 1, 2), side dishes, and more soups. Their flavor is similar to that of an onion, but milder and softer somehow. I’m looking forward to making this recipe someday: Grilled Baby Leeks with Romesco Sauce.


The thing about leeks (puerros in Spanish, what a lovey little rolled-r word), though, is that they’re a bit tricky to clean, as illustrated in the following video.

Leeks, by Gourmet


  1. Cut off and discard the dark green leaves. Trim and discard the roots.
  2. Halve the stalk lengthwise.
  3. Slice them crosswise.T
  4. Transfer them to a bowl of cold water and swish them around a few times.
  5. With hands loosely cupped, lift the leeks out of the bowl and place them on a plate or work surface (or colander).
  6. Discard the water with the remaining grit.
  7. Repeat until the water is clear.

See some fun drawings of leek cleaning.

Karlos Arguiñano is welcome to come make me some leek dishes anytime. Like this one, for one:

Karlos Arguiñano


Why eat leeks?

What are some benefits of eating leeks? They’re a good source of dietary fiber! They contain folic acid, calcium, potassium, and even vitamin C. Also: they’re easier to digest than regular onions!


May I suggest some more recipes (if you haven’t had enough already)?

And if you speak Spanish, try these:

Have you eaten leeks before? Why are they so expensive in the US?

9 thoughts on “Spanish Cooking—The Leek

  1. I LOVE leeks! haven’t a clue why they’re so darn expensive here. BUT, in the summer we get them for a buck each at the farmers’ market :) Thanks for more recipes, I’ll be looking at them for sure!!

  2. I love leeks, I sometimes just make “consomé de puerro” because is thick, soft and waaaaaaaaaaaaaarm for the winter. But now I have to try the salmon tartaletas!

      1. I don’t remember…I think a Basque cheese. Maybe Cassandra knows, she’s been there with me-a pintxo bar with all cheese pintxos! Heaven.

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