I don’t know about you, but after the indulgence of December, January leaves me wanting to eat things that are unfussy, quick and comforting. I’m not one for diets or detox – I try to have a healthy balanced diet all year (in moderation, of course!) – but the new year always makes me crave simple, no-fuss deliciousness. And having spent most of December in the kitchen, it’s nice to find a dish that doesn’t require such a lot of input. I mean, I love cooking, otherwise why would I do this? But you can have too much of a good thing 🙂
Also, as January inevitably brings a blast of icy weather (or biblical-style rain, as we have today), it’s nice to find some tasty winter warmers that don’t need to cook for hours on end. Sometimes, you need a dish that crams plenty of flavour into something you can throw together in just a few minutes. This is just such a dish. On the table in 15 minutes or less.
This was a big hit with both Kipper and DH. It’s filling, and extremely delicious – the leeks lend a sweet oniony flavour to counter the savoury richness of the cheese, and the breadcrumbs soak up the butter and oil to become tiny nuggets of chewy, golden deliciousness. I added the lemon thyme because I had it, and also because I think thyme of all varieties goes wonderfully well with leeks. You could leave it out if you’re not so keen.
I’m afraid I only managed to get one half-decent photo of this. I must have knocked something on the camera, because the settings were all wrong and most of the pics were unusable. Sorry. You’ll just have to make it yourself to see how it looks – and how fabulous it tastes!
This made enough for two adults and a small person – 2 generous portions, basically, which is what you’re going to want 🙂
- 155g spaghetti (or thereabouts)
- 2 medium leeks
- 20g butter
- 1-2 tbsp olive oil
- 25g grated parmesan cheese
- 25g dried breadcrumbs
- 2-3 sprigs lemon thyme (about 1 tsp leaves) - optional
- Bring a large pan of water to the boil and cook the spaghetti according to the packet directions, usually 9-12 minutes.
- Trim and wash the leeks, then slice thinly. Heat the butter and olive oil over a medium heat, then add the leeks and saute, stirring occasionally, until soft. If the leeks begin to brown, turn down the heat slightly.
- A minute or two before the spaghetti is cooked, add the parmesan and crumbs to the leeks and stir well. Add the leaves from the lemon thyme sprigs, mix, and turn the heat right down.
- Drain the spaghetti, add to the leeky crumbs, and toss everything together. Serve at once, with more parmesan to sprinkle, if desired.
I’m also adding it to the Cooking with Herbs Great British Store Cupboard challenge, hosted by Karen at Lavender and Lovage. As this uses herbs as well as the store cupboard staples of pasta, olive oil and dried breadcrumbs, I’m hoping it fits!
I’ve decided to enter this into Credit Crunch Munch, too, as the ingredients are all low cost, and I reckon you could make the whole dish for well under £2. Credit Crunch Munch is hosted by Helen at FussFreeFlavours and Camilla at FabFood4All.