As odd as this may seem, this recipe is actually quite personal for me. My mother taught me how to make this. My mother was a very strange woman. She would pick wild mushrooms and bring them into the house to examine what colors they might make if you turned them into dyes, sometimes leaving them on paper to create intricate designs with their spores. She was a master preserver, confident in her ability to can or process anything. Her library of mason jars would line the walls of my childhood home, holding the little secrets of her fearless flavor experiments and prized recipes. She could eliminate the daunting space between a stranger and a friend in a matter of seconds. I learned the majority of what I know about food from her. She taught me how to see that everything is connected, no matter how obscure the link may be at first. If you can maintain your sense of wonder in this world, you can always find a way to make something into something else; something you need, something you want. She taught me that humble things are beautiful, and if treated correctly, they can be turned into something even more beautiful; something you love.
I miss her so much.
2 whole leeks, roots removed, cleaned
Preheat oven to 170.
Cut the leeks into smaller segments (including the greens) then place them in the food processor. Blend until they resemble finely minced onions. If you don’t have a food processor, just do this by hand with a sharp knife. Be careful since the greens are fibrous and might be hard to cut.
On a baking sheet with parchment paper, spread the minced leeks as thinly and evenly as you can. Place them in the oven and allow them to “bake” for about 6 hours, or until all the moisture in them is gone. They should be light and crispy, like dead autumn leaves.
Place the dehydrated leeks in a coffee grinder and grind until it becomes a fine powder. Store in an airtight container. Keeps for months.
Yields about ½ cup of leek powder.