Entree, Recipes, Side dishes, Vegetables

Leeks with Rice

After the fairly heavy meals of Thanksgiving weekend, I opted for a lighter, vegetarian dish. As I had some nice fresh leeks at hand, I recalled a simple and tasty dish from the Sephardic cuisine:  “Prassa con Arroz”, i.e. “leeks with rice” – and was quickly set on making it.
The dish includes mostly leeks, with very few other ingredients and minimal seasoning, which let the unique fresh, oniony leeks flavor shine.
The procedure is very simple: the leeks are first cooked with a bit of tomato paste, salt, sugar and pepper, and then a small amount of short grain rice is added to the pot with more water, and cooked to a risotto-like texture, which gives the dish more body and texture. To round up the flavors, the dish is finished with a bit of fresh lemon juice and olive oil.
Despite the simple ingredients and cooking method, the flavors are intense and highly satisfying. The dish can be served as a light meal, or as a side dish. Try it and enjoy.

* Click HERE for instructions on how to clean the leeks.
* For more information about Sephardic cuisine, click HERE

Makes: 4
Prep time: 20 minutes
Cooking time: 1 hour

About 5 cups roughly sliced leeks, white and light green part only, washed well (see notes)
3 cups water
2 tsp salt
2 tsp sugar
2 Tbs tomato paste
¼ tsp freshly ground four pepper mix
½ cup short grain rice, washed
2 cups water (additional)
2 tsp fresh lemon juice
1 Tbs olive oil

1. Place the leeks in a wide pot, add 3 cups water, salt and sugar, and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Lower the heat to medium-low, and cook for about 30 minutes, mixing gently occasionally, until the leeks are soft, and most of the water evaporated.

2. Add the tomato paste, pepper, rice and additional 2 cups water. Mix gently and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Cover the pot, lower the heat to simmer and cook for about 30 minutes, until the rice is very soft and most of the water evaporated.

3. Add the lemon juice, mix gently,  taste and adjust seasoning. Drizzle the olive oil on top, and mix gently. Serve warm.

39 thoughts on “Leeks with Rice”

  1. In re-reading your Leek and Potato Patties recipe shown on this page prompts a bunch of thoughts on ways to use a bag of frozen Potatoes O’Brien that I snagged at a fabulous price at the store yesterday.

    I was thinking of a quick, yet fancy, Cream of Potato soup, even though I have five lovely leftover baked potatoes that I usually use for such things. The Canadian bacon that is languishing in the refrigerator would be a welcome addition.

    But after reading your referenced post just now, I’m contemplating thawing, then smashing the already-seasoned O’Briens into submission, adding some eggs and a bit of flour to hold them together, producing ad hoc breakfast patties.

    Your recipes and lovely narrative always seem to get “the juices flowing” in my brain! ;->

    Virtual hugs,


    Liked by 2 people

  2. I like your recipe without even having to read it. Leeks and rice – what a healthy dish. Anything in the onion family always is a plus 🙂 After what I ate for Thanksgiving I need some low calorie recipes (especially since I still have some leftovers.

    Liked by 3 people

  3. May I say I also adore this simple recipe and shall surely pass it along to friends ! Love, love, love leeks and the fact they really are the ‘hero’ of the dish, the rice being more of a body-giving ‘helper’ in my eyes . . . Deeply influenced by the simplicity but wonderful taste achieved by Italians I still wonder could I take a dry white wine bottle to the pot and exchange a tad of the water . . . 🙂 ?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you Eha, I’m glad you liked the dish.
      If you decide to use white wine, then I would suggest using only about a cup or so, and omitting the lemon juice, as otherwise the result could be too acidic., and the flavor of the leeks may be masked by it. Hope you’ll enjoy the results. I’ll be happy to hear how it came out. 🙂


  4. Beautiful. I’ve made a rice pilaf with leeks, using an orange infused oil, but this is leeks with rice! Fabulous. I love what you did here. And yes, we need a break from all of the T-day protein!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Ronit, I love rice and leeks. Fresh leeks are still about at the market so this one’s going to land on our table soon. Likely next to some grilled lamb. Thanks for the inspiration…

    Liked by 2 people

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