ElBarri by Albert Adrià and Josper, recipe 5: grilled leek with calçot

With this new recipe from ElBarri by Albert Adrià and Josper, we are going to learn how to cook grilled leek with calçot.

The passion for calçots in Catalonia is well known. A calçot is a kind of scallion-leek, or elongated white onion which is tender and sweet, cultivated exclusively to be cooked over a fire and the embers of the wood from a vine shoot. When this onion grows, farmers cover it with soil to prevent it from being exposed, so it continues to grow in search of light. It is consumed in late winter and early spring, and it is common to hold a calçot barbeque, or calçotada, using any excuse. The calçotada celebration is originally from the valley of Valls, in the region of Alto Campo, Tarragona. But in recent times it has spread like wildfire, and is celebrated practically all throughout Catalonia; it has become a true social event and it’s even possible to find calçotadas in many other parts of Spain.

El puerro, antes de ser asado en el Josper
A leek waiting to be grilled in the Josper oven


And leeks? Aren’t they a type of calçot? Well, yes, there’s something to that: they are indeed cousins, but with different features. It can be a good substitute when there are no calçots on hand. But at ElBarri, Albert Adrià goes above and beyond by bringing these relatives together in a highly original dish with lots of flavour and the touch of the Josper gastronomic charcoal.



-One large leek

-A handful of mini calçots

-Salt, oil

-Black sauce: 160 g. of green sauce and 200g. of huitlacoche (Mexican truffles)

-A handful of pecans

YAnd here is video featuring the magic of Adrià and ElBarri, with all the flavour that Josper brings to it:

To prepare the leek, cut it right where it begins to turn green and bury it in the embers of the Josper oven for 3 minutes:

Leek buried in the embers of the Josper oven
A leek fulfills its dream

Once finished with the charcoal, empty the leek to make room for the mini calçots and the sauce, applying a special cut:

The grilled leek is emptied.

Now the sweet mini calçots come into play: remove their roots and sprinkle them with oil:

Mini calçots, before being grilled in the Josper

Like the leek, they also get put in the Josper, only this time on the grill:

Calçots on the grill of the Josper oven.

Take out the calçots, remove the outer layer and dice. Prior to this, you will have prepared a black sauce, with 160 g. of green sauce and 200 g. of huitlacoche, (a delight known by Mexicans as the food of the gods), with which you will fill the leek together with the mini calçots. Add a handful of chopped pecans, a vitamin-E rich nut from America which began to be cultivated in Spain in 1978:

Filling the leek with calçots

Lastly, tie the leek with a few pieces of string and bake it for 4 minutes on the Josper oven grill. After taking it out, remove the string; pay special attention to the local way of plating it at ElBarri by Albert Adrià. The only thing left to do is enjoy delicious calçots inside a leek…

ElBarri by Albert Adrià and Josper

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