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Weeknight Cooking

Dinner Tonight: Roasted Chicken Thighs with Buttered Mushrooms and Leeks

The fresh flavor of leeks livens up this dish. But you have to treat them right.
By Published Jan. 14, 2019

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What’s the best way to wash leeks?

Leeks are so good, but they’re too often overlooked at the grocery store. As cousins of onions, shallots, and chives (all part of the allium group), leeks have a mild, verdant flavor. Even when cooked, they offer a fresh note to the earthy mushrooms in this simple recipe here. They’re a welcome breath of summery air in midwinter.

But leeks can be a bear to clean because of the way they grow: As they shoot up from the ground, soil gets trapped between their layers. The best way to wash them is to cut them up first and then submerge them in a bowl of water and swoosh them around a bit. Change out the water and repeat. (You can also do this in a salad spinner.) It takes a minute, but it’s much better than biting down on a grain of sand. 

Are you a gardener? If so, consider planting a row of leeks next summer. Then, notice how different they taste from the leeks at the grocery store. As much as any vegetable I can think of, leeks’ nuanced flavor reflects their point of origin.


Roasted Chicken Thighs with Buttered Mushrooms and Leeks

A final addition of lemon zest wakes up this savory supper.
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