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Everyday Food, Volume 31 April 2006

What to Look For
Leek tops should be dark green and fresh, not limp or dried out. The bulb ends should have fringes of small crisp-looking roots still attached; avoid split or soft bulbs, or those with large blemishes.

How to Store
Refrigerate leeks up to one week, loosely wrapped in plastic. Wait to trim the tops and roots until just before use.

How to Use Them
Leeks can replace onions in soups, stews, and sautes. They are also wonderful on their own, steamed, sauteed, grilled, roasted, or broiled. Before using, it is essential to clean them well, as dirt, sand, and grit can collect between the layers.

How to Clean Them
Leeks can be extremely dirty and are best cleaned after they've been trimmed and cut. Soak cut leeks in a bowl of cool water; lift them out, replace water, and repeat until no grit remains at the bottom of bowl.

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