Leeks braised in caraway with thyme butter and hazelnuts

You've never had leeks like this before. Gemmayze St restaurant's head chef and owner Samir Allen shares his recipe that takes humble leeks to delicious new heights with caraway, thyme butter and nuts

By Samir Allen
  • 35 mins preparation
  • 20 mins cooking
  • Serves 10
  • Print
This recipe was first published in Taste magazine.
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Thyme butter
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 large shallot, finely diced
  • 50 gram fresh thyme leaves, chopped
  • 50 millilitre cream
  • 250 gram diced butter, at room temperature
Braised leeks
  • 50 millilitre olive oil
  • 1 onion, finely sliced
  • 1 bulb garlic, halved horizontally
  • 2 teaspoon caraway seeds
  • 4 large leeks, trim off green ends, cut into 10cm logs
  • 50 gram butter
  • 500 millilitre chicken stock
  • 100 gram crushed, toasted hazelnuts, to serve


  • 1
    For thyme butter, place a medium saucepan on medium heat, add olive oil and sweat shallot and thyme until soft but not coloured. Add cream and reduce by half. Pour into a container, cover with plastic wrap and place in fridge until completely cooled.
  • 2
    Place diced butter in a stand mixer with a whisk attachment (or use an electric whisk) and whisk until pale and fluffy.
  • 3
    Slowly add cold cream reduction and whisk for 5 minutes until entirely incorporated. Refrigerate until set. Bring to room temperature before serving.
  • 4
    For leeks, add olive oil to a frying pan on medium-high heat. Add onion, garlic bulb halves and caraway seeds and sweat until garlic is soft and onion translucent.
  • 5
    Make a space in pan and add leek logs, ensuring they are touching the hot pan. Fry until golden brown, turning once. Add butter then deglaze pan with the stock.
  • 6
    Bring to a boil then simmer for 15 minutes or until leeks are tender.
  • 7
    Remove leeks with slotted spoon, ensuring liquid drains from leeks, and place on a large serving platter.
  • 8
    Top leeks with spoonfuls of thyme butter and sprinkle with toasted hazelnuts.

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