Mid-week clean and lean catch-ups: Lemony leeks with kidney beans and feta

My latest obsession is with maintaining a clean and lean lifestyle. Thankfully all of the ladies in my life are on the same post-holiday health kick so it’s been a real group effort to start the year on a health high (we’ll forget the few momentary lapses we’ve had on a couple of the weekends :)).

The book that did it was James Duigan’s Clean & Lean Diet, which is not so much a diet but more of a common sense guide to how we should be eating and how to make educated, healthier choices when it comes to food. I found the book fascinating, inspiring and full of surprising nuggets of nutritional info.

So dinner parties with the girls tend to be more on the clean and lean side of late. Take last week’s mid-week catch up with Elissa as an example. We trawled my new favourite food blog My New Roots and made a slight adaption to her Lemony Leeks recipe which was packed full of the flavour and goodness of leeks.

Elissa and I were totally chuffed with our new discovery which was very clean and lean but also a super satisfying flavour bomb that packs up nicely for tomorrow’s lunch (if you didn’t eat it all!)

Lemony Leeks with Kidney Beans and Feta


4 large leeks

2 cups vegetable stock

1 can or jar of kidney beans

½ cup crumbled goat feta


2 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil

1 tsp. liquid honey or agave syrup

juice and zest of one lemon

pinch of sea salt + pepper

1 clove garlic, minced

1 small bunch fresh dill


1)   Slice off the root end of the each leek, then cut the stalk into 1-inch chunks on the diagonal. Only use the white and very pale green portion of the stalk, discard the green part. Submerge leek slices in a large bowl of water to remove dirt between the layers. Be careful the layers stay intact.

2)   In a large frying pan or saucepan, heat the vegetable broth until simmering. Remove leeks slices from water and place each slice with one flat side down in the broth. Cover and let simmer for 4-5 minutes on medium heat.

3)   While the leeks are cooking, make the dressing by combining all ingredients except for the lemon zest and dill.

4)   When leeks are just tender (do not overcook!), transfer into a large mixing bowl, leaving the remaining broth. Pour kidney beans into the pan and heat in the broth for about one minute, tossing to warm through. Add half of the dill and toss.

5)   Remove pan from heat and using a slotted spoon, place chickpeas on top of the leeks. Pour dressing over top, sprinkle with remaining dill, lemon zest, and plenty of freshly ground black pepper.

6)   Mix together and serve immediately in individual plates with a sprinkling of goat feta.

Serves 2-3


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