Leek and mushroom bake

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I was given this recipe a long time ago. I wonder why the sauce is not made with regular flour like a regular béchamel..But I guess both can work. This can be a side dish or a main...

Yields6 Servings
 2 Large (or 4 small) leeks
 ¾ lb Mushrooms
 Herbs to your liking
 4 Thick bread slices
 2 oz Butter
 1.50 oz Cornstarch
 2 cups Milk
 15 oz Cheddar cheese (medium or strong)
 1 tbsp Tomato paste
1

Trim the leeks. Slice across them to make rings. Rinse thoroughly.
Boil gently in a saucepan with enough water to just cover the leeks for about 7 minutes

2

While the leeks are cooking, clean the mushrooms (if necessary) by wiping with damp kitchen paper then cut into slices

3

Rub butter along the sides and bottom of a casserole dish. Break most of the bread into rough cubes and stick these on the bottom & sides of the dish, covering as much of it as possible, and reserving enough to put on top of the bake

4

Grate the cheese and put aside. Crumble remaining bread to make a handful of bread crumbs and put to one side

5

When the leeks are cooked, drain well and mix the mushrooms and a teaspoon of mixed herbs with them. Cover and leave to one side (off the heat)

6

Melt 50 gm butter in a thick-based saucepan, remove from the heat and mix in the cornstarch to a smooth paste. Turn the heat down low (a good sauce cannot be hurried!) and put the saucepan & paste back on the heat. After about 30 seconds, add about a quarter of the milk and keep stirring. After a couple of minutes add another quarter of the milk and keep stirring. When the sauce is beginning to heat and thicken add the third quarter of milk and about half the cheese. As the sauce thickens more, add a teaspoon or so of tomato paste , stirring well to mix it in (gentle whisking may help), along with half the remaining cheese. Add more milk if necessary - the sauce should be thick but still flow. Adding extra cheese can make a thin sauce thicker. Do not allow the sauce to boil at any stage

7

Put the leek & mushroom mixture into the casserole dish, on top of the brea cubes. Pour the sauce over the mixture to more than cover the mixture. Push the remaining bread cubes into the top of the sauce, then sprinkle the remaining cheese and bread crumbs on top

8

Bake for 30 - 45 minutes at 375°F / 190°C

9

The top should be golden and crispy when ready

Ingredients

 2 Large (or 4 small) leeks
 ¾ lb Mushrooms
 Herbs to your liking
 4 Thick bread slices
 2 oz Butter
 1.50 oz Cornstarch
 2 cups Milk
 15 oz Cheddar cheese (medium or strong)
 1 tbsp Tomato paste

Directions

1

Trim the leeks. Slice across them to make rings. Rinse thoroughly.
Boil gently in a saucepan with enough water to just cover the leeks for about 7 minutes

2

While the leeks are cooking, clean the mushrooms (if necessary) by wiping with damp kitchen paper then cut into slices

3

Rub butter along the sides and bottom of a casserole dish. Break most of the bread into rough cubes and stick these on the bottom & sides of the dish, covering as much of it as possible, and reserving enough to put on top of the bake

4

Grate the cheese and put aside. Crumble remaining bread to make a handful of bread crumbs and put to one side

5

When the leeks are cooked, drain well and mix the mushrooms and a teaspoon of mixed herbs with them. Cover and leave to one side (off the heat)

6

Melt 50 gm butter in a thick-based saucepan, remove from the heat and mix in the cornstarch to a smooth paste. Turn the heat down low (a good sauce cannot be hurried!) and put the saucepan & paste back on the heat. After about 30 seconds, add about a quarter of the milk and keep stirring. After a couple of minutes add another quarter of the milk and keep stirring. When the sauce is beginning to heat and thicken add the third quarter of milk and about half the cheese. As the sauce thickens more, add a teaspoon or so of tomato paste , stirring well to mix it in (gentle whisking may help), along with half the remaining cheese. Add more milk if necessary - the sauce should be thick but still flow. Adding extra cheese can make a thin sauce thicker. Do not allow the sauce to boil at any stage

7

Put the leek & mushroom mixture into the casserole dish, on top of the brea cubes. Pour the sauce over the mixture to more than cover the mixture. Push the remaining bread cubes into the top of the sauce, then sprinkle the remaining cheese and bread crumbs on top

8

Bake for 30 - 45 minutes at 375°F / 190°C

9

The top should be golden and crispy when ready

Leek and mushroom bake

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