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Best in season: Leeks

Every month we choose an exceptional ingredient and showcase just how special it is with supplier stories and unique recipes designed to get the best out of these star products – this month it’s British leeks

Pick of the veg patch

With their creamy, mellow flavour and distinctive oniony tang, leeks are a great seasonal accompaniment to March meals.

A versatile vegetable from the allium family, they work equally well smothered in cheese sauce and served alongside a roast dinner as they do drizzled with olive oil and griddled with fresh fish for a lighter spring bite. See some of our favourite ways to serve them in the recipes below, but, if you want to make something befitting St David's Day (1 March) this month, try our recipe for creamy Cawl Cennin soup with Welsh rarebit toasts.

Try the leek soup recipe

Recipe: Leek, thyme and mascarpone tart

  • PREP: 10min
    COOK: 50min
  • SERVING
    688 cal
  • EFFORT
    Easy

Nutritional info per serving

  • Calories: 688
  • Fat: 48.5g (24.6g saturated)
  • Carbohydrates: 50.9g
  • Sugar: 3.9g
  • Fibre: 6.2g
  • Protein: 11.9g
  • Salt: 0.74g
 

Ingredients

SERVES 4

6 leeks, trimmed and washed
3 garlic cloves, unpeeled
3 sprigs of thyme
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
400g shortcrust pastry
1 egg, beaten
175g mascarpone

Method

  1. Heat the oven to 190°C/170°C fan/gas 5. Slice the leeks lengthways and place in a roasting tin. Add the garlic, thyme, olive oil and balsamic vinegar, then season. Roast for 20 minutes.
  2. Roll out the shortcrust pastry to a 36cm x 28cm rectangle and place on a baking sheet. Reserve a little of the beaten egg for brushing, then beat the rest into the mascarpone.
  3. Squeeze the flesh from the roasted garlic and stir into the mascarpone. Season to taste.
  4. Spread the mascarpone mix over the pastry, leaving a 5cm border around the edge. Arrange the leeks on top and fold the pastry up around the edges. Brush the pastry with the reserved egg and return to the oven for 30 minutes.

See more spring recipe ideas

Seasonal inspiration

Leeks are wonderfully versatile and can stand up to strong flavours like mature cheese and pickles. Get creative with tasty ideas using this month's best vegetable on our Cook with M&S app, like this zingy leek with tarragon vinaigraitte.

See this recipe

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