It was 2008 when I moved to Switzerland from Peru. Life was overwhelmingly beautiful. The language, the people, the flavors, the experiences, all seemed so different to me. However above everything, there were many new foods to try. I still remember the first time I tasted Roquefort at a restaurant near home. As I took one bite imagining how it would taste, this sneaky blue cheese melted rapidly in my mouth leaving me enchanted and surprised. I wasn’t prepared. Soft, creamy and pungent, it was served on a bed of homemade pasta and braised leeks. The leeks were so tender and sweet that it seemed as if they were competing with the Roquefort.
I had never eaten leeks this way or tasted this cheese before, but this combination of flavours was so special that it made me feel I had finally arrived in my new home.
When one of my favorite food bloggers, the smitten kitchen, came up with a recipe for toast using these ingredients, I decided to give it my own twist.
If you want to show someone you care, this is the crostini for you to make.
Wine tip: Moscato d’Asti
Leek & Blue Cheese Crostini (4 crostini)
- 2 big pounds leeks, white parts only finely sliced
- 1 tbsp butter
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- ¼ cup dry white wine
- Coarse salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 50gr Roquefort (or similar blue cheese), crumbled
- Chopped chives
- Half a lemon
Chop leeks as finely as possible and thoroughly to remove any dirt.
Set the stove to medium heat and add butter and oil to a large pan. Once the butter has melted, add washed leeks and mix. Add a pinch of salt and freshly ground pepper. Cook for 5 minutes. Add white wine and let simmer for 2 minutes. Reduce heat to low and let cook covered, stirring occasionally for 15 minutes or until soft and caramelized.
Add 1 tablespoon olive oil to a grill pan on medium high heat. Add sliced garlic and fry on both sides until golden. Remove of the heat and put them on paper towel so it absorbs the extra oil. Do not discard the oil left in the pan. In the same pan add the bread slices and grill on both sides Once golden all over, remove from the heat.
Add one tablespoon of braised leeks to the bread slices and top with crumbled Roquefort. Finalize with chopped chives, a small squeeze of lemon juice and a drizzle of olive oil. Top with a garlic chip.