My neighbor asked me to water her garden while she was away the other day. Surprisingly I remembered so she came over with a bunch of leeks to say thank you. She also pointed out that the flower stalks are edible too. I made Coq a leeky soup from the ends and I cut the flower stalks into bean size pieces to add to the vegetables. The soup was very good and a nice beginning to the meal.
I forgot to photograph the plates again so I showed the aftermath. My plating is still firmly entrenched in the suburbs so you aren't missing much anyway. The roast I lightly seasoned with my beef rub so the drippings wouldn't be too salty for gravy. Then seared all round on the stove before putting in the oven at 250ᵒ. When it was done I set it to rest and added red wine to the pan to deglaze it and set that reducing.
This is the first time I've done vegetables the way a restaurant would. I steamed the vegetables to about half cooked then put in cold water to stop the cooking process. When I was almost ready to plate I tossed the vegetables in some oil and a few drops of sesame oil. I thought the sesame flavor would go well with the nutty rice oil. They do go well together but not with a cheese sauce. It seems that soy sauce pushes the sesame flavor to the background in Asian cuisine. With no soy sauce in this dish the sesame was front and center and at war with the cheese sauce.
The other innovation in this meal was the leek flower stalks. They were onion but very sweet, definitely something to have when available. Had I not put sesame oil in the pan this medley of vegetables would have been fabulous. The cheese sauce was simple oil, butter and flour cooked a bit then some chicken stock, milk and grated cheddar.
Overall it was the most complex meal I have put together so far, soup, 2 sauces, 3 vegetables, potatoes and roast beef. It was challenging to have it all ready at once but I managed fairly well. Par cooking the veggies made that portion of the meal much easier to finish at the right time. I will use that technique when I have a difficult or complex meal to prepare. For a simple meal it probably isn't worth the extra trouble.