- 12 medium leeks, halved crosswise where they start to become green, green tops thoroughly cleaned
- 2 thyme sprigs
- 4½ tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil, divided
- 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
- Juice of 1 lemon
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 1 tablespoon small mint leaves
- 1/4 ounce dried black trumpet mushrooms – optional
Cut the white of each leek crosswise into 1/3-inch-thick slices; keep the rings intact. Thinly slice enough leek greens to make 1/2 cup; reserve the rest for another use.
For the leeks:
In a large pot, bring 6 cups of water to a boil with the thyme and 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Season with salt, cover and let the water infuse for 2 minutes.Add the sliced leeks and simmer over low heat until tender, about 12 minutes.Line a large baking sheet with paper towels. With a slotted spoon, transfer the leeks to the paper towels to drain, reserving the water. Pat the leeks dry.
For the leek greens:
Add the leek greens to the remaining water and cook for 1 minute and then drain well.Heat ½ tablespoon of olive oil. Add the leek greens and cook over moderate heat for 1 minute, stirring.Transfer the greens to a blender. Add 2 tablespoons of water and blend until smooth; season the puree with salt.
For the dressing:
Whisk 2T of the olive oil with the vinegar and lemon juice and season with salt and pepper.
For the optional mushrooms:
Put the mushrooms in a bowl and cover with the hot water. Let stand until softened, about 10 minutes. Lift the mushrooms out of the water and rinse. Cut any large mushrooms in half lengthwise. In a small skillet, heat the remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Add the mushrooms, season with salt and pepper and toss over high heat until warmed through, about 1 minute.
Dollop the pureed leek greens onto a platter. Arrange the leeks on the platter and spoon the vinaigrette on top. Scatter with the mushrooms and mint and serve.