Michel Roux Jr. is one of Britain’s most celebrated French chefs — he helms renowned London restaurant Le Gavroche and is the author of the new cookbook The French Kitchen. Not for the beginner, yet not so advanced you’d need two Michelin stars (like Roux has) to pull them off, these recipes honor the foundation of classic French cuisine while looking to the future. This fresh, vibrant vegetarian charcuterie is the stuff of food photographers’ dreams. Serve with soft goat cheese for a very memorable first course.
- Pinch sugar
- 20 medium leeks, trimmed, washed and left whole
Goat cheese cream
- 6 ounces soft goat curd or goat cheese
- 8 ounces creme fraiche
- 1 tablespoon chopped chives
- olive oil
- black pepper
For the terrine
Bring a large pan of water to a boil and season with a generous amount of salt and a little sugar. Add the leeks and cook them until tender, 10-12 minutes. Check with the point of a knife — it should pierce the leeks easily. When the leeks are ready, carefully remove them from the pan and drain them on a rack so they keep their shape.
Line a terrine dish measuring about 9½ x 3 inches with a double layer of plastic wrap, leaving plenty of plastic wrap overlapping the sides. Place the whole leeks in the terrine, arranging them head to tail so you get alternating strips of green and white in the terrine. Wrap the overlapping plastic wrap tightly over the top and pierce it a few times with the point of a knife.
Now you need to weigh down the terrine to press out the excess water. The ideal way of doing this is to place another terrine of exactly the same size inside the first dish and weigh that down with heavy weights. Alternatively, place a small board inside the terrine, covering the leeks, and put a weight on top. It does need to be really heavy to press out the water. Place the whole thing on a tray to catch the water and leave in the fridge overnight.
The next day, to make the goat cheese cream, mash the goat curd with the crème fraîche until smooth and light, then season with salt, pepper, chopped chives, and a drizzle of olive oil.
Carefully turn the terrine out onto a serving dish and cut it into slices with a sharp knife. Serve with the goat cheese cream.