Mild, sweet and oniony, leeks have enjoyed a prime spot in the world of British vegetables for centuries. They’re an important part of our chicken pies, play a significant role in our soups and, when creamed, make the perfect side to a Sunday roast. The humble allium is even the national emblem of Wales and associated with Saint David (the country’s patron saint), as supposedly an ancient Welsh king ordered his soldiers to identify themselves by strapping a leek to their helmets before a big battle.
It’s no wonder then that we tend to associate leeks with our own cuisine instead of treating it as a more international ingredient. However, they’re just as important in food cultures all over the world, as they’re easy to grow, pleasantly flavoured and incredibly versatile. Here, we take a look at five other countries which make the most of leeks in all sorts of different dishes – give them a try at home and discover how well they can adapt to various cuisines.