Spending most of my summer holidays in the countryside of southern France, my idea of ultimate relaxation is an early evening glass of cold wine; grazing on simple, elegant dishes and watching the sunset with family and friends.
Something like a brilliantly bright and moreish leek terrine, which has the natural sweetness and slipperiness of the leeks, combined with salty and smooth textured goat’s cheese.
Leek terrine with goat’s cheese
- 20 medium leeks
- 180g soft goat’s cheese
- 100g crème fraiche
- Olive oil, red wine vinegar
- Salt, pepper, sugar
- 1 Tbsp chop chives
Trim and wash the leeks then cook in plenty boiling water with a generous amount of salt and a little sugar for 10-12 minutes or until tender. When tender, carefully drain on a rack keeping their shape.
Line a terrine (24x12cm) with double layers of cling film with plenty overlapping. Place the leeks in the terrine making sure to place them head to tail so as mix the colour of the terrine, wrap tightly with the overlapping cling film and pierce a few times with a knife point.
Place a board with heavy weights on top to press the excess liquid out of the terrine. Leave to press and chill in the fridge overnight.
Whisk the cheese and crème fraiche until smooth and light, season with salt pepper and a drizzle of olive oil.
Turn out the terrine and using a sharp knife cut into slices.
Place a quenelle of goat’s cheese cream on top and dress with a simple olive oil, red wine vinegar vinaigrette.
Michel Roux Jr’s wines to drink with leek terrine
- Sancerre Rosé, Andre Dezat: The Sancerre Rosé has real depth and almost meatiness to it and works well if the dish is highly seasoned and has a viscous peppery olive oil. RRP: £17.25 from Berry Bros. & Rudd, $22.95 from Sotheby’s Wine (New York, Retail)
- Fié Gris, Eric Chevalier: Fié Gris is a wine with attitude, sharp scented, sweet nose, a mouthful sensation. RRP: £17.99 from The Wine Library, $21.00 from Saratoga Wine Exchange
- Domaine de la Grange des Pères Blanc: La Grange des Pères Blanc, a blend of Viognier, Chenin, Chardonnay, and in some years many others, has the fruit nose that sings of summer holidays, salads and Provence. RRP: £107.33 from Hedonism Wines, $140.00 from Winfield-Flynn, Ltd.
More about the wines
One of my favourites with this dish is the Sancerre Rosé, Andre Dezat. Using grapes of the Pinot Noir varietal, this rosé has a real depth and almost a meatiness to it, making it a great match for highly seasoned salads, especially those with a viscous peppery olive oil.
Dry and deliciously light, the strawberry fruit flavours of the Sancerre Rosé really draw out the sweetness of the leeks.
If you prefer something a little less sweet and like your wine to accentuate the savoury notes such as the goat’s cheese, then I recommended the Fié Gris, Eric Chevalier. This white wine has a sweet nose but is sharp scented and full of attitude. A great mouth sensation.
But for that special glass of wine that has the ability to turn a small terrine into a delectable treat, the Domaine de la Grange des Pères Blanc is a must. The blends of Viognier, Chenin, Chardonnay and in some years many others, the fruit nose sings of summer holidays, fresh salads and Provence.