You have ever one of those ingredients that you find yourself using for just one purpose? It may be you found one recipe and it's the only reason you purchased an ingredient. Today I want to challenge you to take the ingredients you use in your kitchen and turn them into multi-taskers. Leeks were on the list of my one shot ingredients. I only used them when I make Alton Brown's Potato Leek Soup. I found some nice looking leeks at the farmer's market this past Saturday, so that inspired me to come up with some new ways to use them. I searched online and came up with a recipe I wanted to try from Food Network's Claire Robinson - Creamy Leek and Corn Orzo. This recipe using the starchy pasta water along with some butter to make a creamy dish without the cream.
Below you will find my notes from this recipe. Here is the link to the recipe itself at Food Network's website.
1. It's August, so fresh corn on the cob is readily available. This is the best time of year to make this dish. Try to choose corn that was picked the most recent. Buying at a road side stand or farmer's market is the way to go.
2. Bring enough water to boil to cook the orzo. Typically when I cook pasta I fill my biggest pot full of water. However you want the starch that the pasta is going to leave behind, so you don't want to dilute it too much.
3. Claire used another pot to boil the leeks. I just used the same water to same time and energy. Just make sure you have at least 2 cups of the water leftover to add to the corn later.
4. Remember to season each ingredient with salt along the way - the pasta water, the leeks, the corn. This way your not adding salt at the table, which is when most people over salt their food.
This dish came out a winner at my house. The sweetness of the corn and the milder flavor that the leeks pack compared to the onion really made this dish. If you wanted to you could add some protein to this dish, but I served it as a side with some hamburgers and green beans.