Butter Braised Baby Leeks with Brussels Sprout Crowns and Oyster Mushrooms make delicious use of a little-known vegetable from the tops of a sprouts stalk.
- 2 Brussels Sprout Crowns (baseball-sized)
- 8–10 baby leeks (about 3/4‑inch to 1‑inch thick)
- 1 pound oyster mushrooms
- 3–4 tablespoon unsalted butter (divided)
- 2 tablespoon olive oil
- kosher salt, freshly ground pepper (for seasoning)
- 3 clove garlic (peeled and chopped)
- 4 cup chicken stock
- chopped chives (to taste, as garnish, optional)
To braise the vegetables: Quarter the Brussels sprout crowns leaving the core intact and leaves attached.
Pull away any tough outer layer until all the leeks are of a uniform thickness. Carefully trim root end from leeks, leaving each leek in one piece. Trim leeks into 6 to 8‑inch lengths, then halve lengthways. Rinse under cold water; drain.
Cut the oyster mushrooms into bite-sized pieces.
Heat olive oil in a large sauté pan with a lid over medium heat. Add the mushrooms and season lightly with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally until the mushroom begin to release their moisture. Add 1 tablespoon of butter and the chopped garlic. Continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until mushrooms are browned on all sides, about 4 more minutes. Use a slotted spoon to move the mushrooms to a plate leaving as much butter and garlic in the pan as possible.
Add another 2–3 of tablespoons butter to the pan. Once melted arrange leeks in the pan cut side down in a single layer. Cook until softened, about 3 to 4 minutes. Carefully turn leeks and cook on the other side until softened, about 2- 3 minutes. Season cut side with salt and pepper. Turn the leeks again so they are cut side down and peel off any loose or papery outer layers.
Return the mushrooms to the pan along with the quartered Brussels sprout crowns, use a spoon to drizzle the vegetables all over with some of the melted butter. Let them cook, basting them with melted butter from the pan several more times until beginning to soften, about 3 minutes.
Gently ladle in chicken stock until it covers the vegetables by about halfway (you might not use all the stock). Place the lid on the pan slightly askew so that some of the steam can escape. Cook until everything is fully cooked and there is no raw bite to the leeks, about 30 minutes.
To serve: Using a slotted spoon gently move the vegetable onto a shallow or slope-sided serving plate, keeping the leeks laid out flat and the Brussels sprout crowns intact. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Raise the heat on the sauce to high and reduce it until thickened and velvety, about 5 minutes. Pour the sauce over the vegetables. Garnish with chopped chives (if using) and serve immediately.