Braised Leeks with Labneh, Za'atar and Toasted Seeds


If you don’t want to bother with the labneh here (which I would understand, its very easy to make but the general process required is a faff and I get that dripping yoghurt hanging in the kitchen doesn’t appeal to everyone) then there are loads of alternatives to speed this recipe up. Try goat’s curd (lots of big supermarkets do it) or make a cumin/garlic greek yoghurt - crush a clove of garlic with a teaspoon of cumin seeds and stir through a little greek yoghurt with a squeeze of lemon, olive oil, salt and pepper. Serve with crusty sourdough bread - its a banging brunch, and if you like eggs (which I don't) I’m sure a nice poached/fried egg would work v well. Serves 4.

For the labneh:

  • 500g full fat natural greek yoghurt

  • 1 tsp salt

  • Cheesecloth

  1. Whisk the salt through the yoghurt and pour the mixture into a cheesecloth suspended over a bowl - to allow liquid to drip through

  2. Leave overnight

The strained yoghurt you are left with will be firmer than yoghurt. Keep in the fridge if you have any leftover, and spread it on toast or eat as a dip with olive oil and toasted seeds.

For the leeks:

  • 5 leeks

  • Big knob of butter

  • 1 tbsp za’atar

  • 4 tbsp toasted seeds or ideally dukkah if you have it

  • Lots of good qual extra virgin olive oil

  • Lemon

  • Salt and pepper

  • Sourdough bread

  1. Cut the lighter parts of the leeks into 2.5cm rounds

  2. Heat the butter in a saucepan and add the leeks and a half cup of water with lots of salt and pepper

  3. Put the lid on and simmer gently for 7 minutes or so

  4. Drain the leeks, toss with the labneh (or goats curd/yog), za’atar, dukkah and decent glugs of olive oil and the juice of the lemon

  5. Mop up with bread