Seriously good leek and cheese toasties

This may not sound very sophisticated but it is SO good!  There’s something about leek, cream and cheese which is a bit special, especially when it tops a couple of pieces of crunchy toasted bread.  And it only takes about 15 minutes.  It’s very rich so serving it with some steamed, buttered asparagus should fill you up plenty.  Recipe courtesy of Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall.


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15g butter
2 leeks, trimmed (white and pale green part only), washed and sliced
A sprinkling of dried mixed herbs
3 tbsp double cream or crème fraîche
50g mature cheddar or other well-flavoured hard cheese, grated
Sea salt and freshly ground pepper
2 thick slices good, robust bread

Melt the butter in a frying pan over medium heat and add the leeks. As soon as they are sizzling, turn down the heat and sweat gently, stirring, for 8 minutes. Stir in the herbs and cream (or crème fraîche), and cook for a minute or two, until the cream is bubbling. Take off the heat and stir in two-thirds of the cheese. Season to taste. Lightly toast the bread, spread on a thick layer of the leek mixture and top with the remaining cheese. Grill until bubbling and golden. Serve straight away.