Of course you could use a cured Parma-type ham in this recipe or replace the Cheddar with Gruyere which also has excellent melting properties.


  • 8 small leeks, well trimmed
  • 16 thin slices cooked ham
  • butter, for greasing
  • 150 g (5oz) mature cheddar cheese, grated
  • 2 tblsp dijon mustard
  • 6 tblsp crème fraiche
  • crusty french bread, to serve


  • Preheat the oven to 200C (400F/Gas 6). Blanch the leeks in a pan of boiling salted water for 3-4 minutes until just tender. Drain and quickly refresh under cold running water to stop them from cooking any further, then drain well and pat dry on kitchen paper.
  • Wrap each leek in two slices of the ham and arrange them in a buttered baking dish. Place the Cheddar in a bowl and stir in the Dijon mustard and crème fraiche until well combined. Season to taste. Spread over the leeks and bake for 15-20 minutes until bubbling and golden brown. Serve at once straight to the table with plenty of crusty bread to mop up all of those delicious juices.