Leeks in Olive Oil (Pirasa)


This traditional Turkish dish from the Black Sea region is a beautiful side dish or main course. My husband informs me that it is usually served cold, topped with lemon juice, and he loves it served with breaded and fried mackerel or grilled chicken. Pirasa can also be served hot and is good in all seasons.


  • 3 leeks, cut in 1/3 inch rounds
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 carrots, chopped in rounds
  • 1/4 cup brown rice
  • 1/3 cup unfiltered olive oil
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 tsp agave nectar (in place of sugar)
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Heat the olive oil in a pot and saute onions until they turn clear. Add carrots and saute for a few minutes. Add leeks and stir for a couple more minutes. Add water, agave, salt and pepper. When the water boils add rice and lemon juice, cover, and simmer until the rice is cooked.
Pırasa is best when it’s served cold with a little lemon juice on top. Enjoy!