Leeks, known scientifically as Allium porrum, are related to garlic, onions, shallots, and scallions. They have a sweet, delicate flavor all their own. Before using leeks, it is essential to clean them well, as dirt, sand, and grit can collect between the layers.
Leek tops should be dark green and firm, 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.
Leeks will exude an aroma that can be absorbed by other things in your refrigerator, so to store them before cooking, lightly wrap them to contain the odour and moisture. Do not trim or wash before storing. Store in the vegetable drawer of your refrigerator.
Trim off the roots along with any tough green tops. Peel off the outer layer, then cut through our green tops to about 6mm from the white part. Spread the leaves and wash under cold water to remove any dirt. Leeks can be steamed, boiled and microwave, about 6-8 minutes and are delicious added to soups, casseroles, sauces, quiches, served as a vegetable or stuffed. They can be used instead of onions in many recipes.