March’s kitchen – last of the leeks

I know we used leeks for last month’s recipe but I tried this recipe the other day and it was a great hit with everyone. So I thought we’d have one last winter recipe before the start of the new season’s flavours next month. These really are the last of the leeks!

Enjoy warm or cold

Cheesy leek & bacon puff

2 tbsp oil

8 rashers bacon

25g butter

4 medium leeks, thinly sliced

2 tsp thyme leaves

140g Gruyere cheese, small cubes

1 large egg

500g pack puff pastry

  •  Heat 1 tbsp oil in a frying pan. Trim the rind off the bacon and cut into small pieces. Fry until beginning to crisp. Remove from the pan and pat with kitchen roll
  • Heat remaining oil and the butter in the pan and add the leeks, thyme and seasoning. Cook until softened.
  • Put the leeks, bacon and cheese in a bowl and mix lightly. Leave to cool
  • Add a teaspoon of water to the egg in a small bowl and whisk lightly
  • Cut off one third of the pastry and roll into 15x30cm rectangle. Place on a lightly greased baking tray.
  • Lay filling on the pastry
  • Pile the cheesy leek and bacon filling on to it, leaving a 2cm border all around
  • Roll the remaining pastry into a larger rectangle – so that it will cover the base
  • Brush the edges of the base with the egg then top with the larger rectangle of pastry. Smooth down gently to get rid of air pockets. Cut away any excess pastry to make a tidy edge then brush all over with the egg wash
  • Seal the edges with a fork and chill for 30 minutes
  • When ready to cook brush with more egg wash and season with a little salt and pepper
  • Pop into a preheated oven200C/fan180/gas 6 for 10 minutes then reduce the heat to 180C/160fan/gas 4 and cook for another 25-30 mins until puffed up and golden brown.
  • Serve hot or enjoy at room temperature later in the day.

Make ahead – freeze before cooking or can be kept, covered  in the fridge overnight