Japanese Leek and Mushroom Gratin
Warm up with a rich, creamy gratin loaded with Japanese leeks and mushrooms. Learn a convenient trick that will save you time from preparing a separate white (or béchamel) sauce!
Photographed by Akio Takeuchi
Calorie count is per serving.
Ingredients (Serves 2-3)
- 2 Japanese leeks
- 200 g mushrooms (any variety)Note
*Such as king oyster, fresh shiitake, shimeji mushrooms, etc.
- 2 slices bacon (thinly sliced) (25-30 g)
- 60 g macaroni
- 500 ml milk
- 1 bouillon cube
- 40-60 g shredded cheese
- 2 tbsp butter
- 2 1/2 tbsp flour
- A pinch of pepper
Cut the leeks diagonally into 1 cm wide slices. Cut off the root ends of the mushrooms and cut into easy-to-eat pieces or separate into clusters. Cut the bacon into 1 cm wide strips.
Boil a pot of water and add a generous amount of salt. Cook the macaroni slightly longer than specified on the package, then drain.
Melt the butter in a frying pan over medium heat. Stir-fry the leeks and bacon. When the leeks soften, add the mushrooms and stir-fry until tender. Sprinkle with flour and combine until there are no pockets of dry flour.
Adding the flour during stir-frying means you won't have to make a separate white (or béchamel) sauce.
Pour in the milk all at once and stir well. When the mixture starts to bubble, crumble the bouillon cube into the pan along with 1/3 tsp of salt and a pinch of pepper to taste.
Add the macaroni and simmer for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent the bottom from burning. Pour the mixture into a heat-resistant dish, sprinkle with shredded cheese, and bake for 10-15 minutes in a toaster oven (or an oven preheated to 200 degrees Celsius) until golden brown.
Simmering the milk thickens the consistency of the gratin and gives it a rich flavor.
*Try freezing for convenience!*
Pour the gratin into individual heat-resistant dishes that can be stored in the freezer. Once the gratin has completely cooled, sprinkle with shredded cheese, cover, and freeze. Will keep for about 2 weeks.