Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Creamy Potato Leek Soup....comfort food!

This is a very simple soup to make and is full of rich and delicious flavors. This recipe calls for very inexpensive ingredients and makes a lot so it can be enjoyed for many meals!

Creamy Potato Leek Soup served with Gruyère Cheese and croutons
Roughly chop the onion

Mince the garlic or use a garlic press

This is a Leek!- looks like an over-sized scallion

Remove the root end and begin to slice in 1/4" rings

Continue to slice the leeks until half way through the dark green portion.

Sliced leeks.
Brown potatoes peeled and largely chopped.

Boil the potatoes in a large pot with the chicken broth.
Melted butter and scallions about to be sauteed.

Scallions  and onions are translucent- ready to be blended.
Emulsion Blender
Blend all the ingredients in one pot with the emulsion blender!
Once blended it is quite thick, time to add the milk.
Milk and Cream has been added, add more if you want it runnier.
Potato Leek Soup topped with Gruyere cheese and croutons.

Potato Leek Soup
Author: Brenna Bowers
Makes: 10 servings (1 1/2 cups per person)

5 brown potatoes, peeled and cut in large chunks
3 leeks cleaned* and sliced in ¼” rings
½ large onion red or white, roughly chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
3 ½ cups chicken broth or chicken stock
2 med cloves garlic, minced
3 Tbs butter
Dash salt (not much needed for the chicken broth can sometime be salty)
Dash pepper
1 ½ tsp chopped dried Herbs De Province (rosemary, thyme, marjoram, basil)
2 1/2cups milk
1 cup Half and Half

Gruyere Cheese, shredded
Croutons or crusty bread

Prepare some of the ingredients by roughly chopping the onions, clean and slice the leeks in 1/4” rings (slicing until you have chopped half-way through the dark green leafy part) (discard at least the last 3 inches of a leek), and mince the garlic.

Peel the potatoes and cut them into large chunks. Place into a large pot and pour in the 3 ½ cups of chicken broth. Place on high heat and boil the potatoes for about 10-12 minutes. When they start getting tender when pricked with a fork, turn off the heat and set aside.

In a large sauté pan, add the 3 Tbs of butter and turn on the stove to medium-low heat. Melt the butter in the pan. Add in the leeks and stir allowing it to cook about 5 minutes (you do not want any browning on any of the ingredients you are sautéing so add in a couple of Tbs of the chicken broth from the boiling potatoes if they are beginning to brown!) Add in the onions and allow to sauté about 7 minutes (add in more chicken broth if needed). Add in the minced garlic, herbs, salt and pepper. Cook for about 2 more minutes and remove from the heat. Add the leek mixture to the potatoes and chicken broth pot.

Using an emulsion blender (see picture above), blend the ingredients until it is a smooth soup**. Allow the soup to cool until it is just slightly hot to the touch before you add the milk and cream (you do not want the milk or cream to curdle). So once the mixture is cooled, pour in the milk and Half and Half and stir until all incorporated.
Taste the soup! Adjust seasonings by adding in more at this time if you want a stronger flavor. Add more milk if you would prefer a more runny soup.

Top each serving with shredded gruyere cheese and croutons or a crusty bread!

*Leeks: have a similar flavor to an onion but are not quite as strong. Leeks are very dirty and therefore must always be cleaned! Dirt and sand get lodged in the leaves easily. You must rinse leeks very well under water and discard the outer leaves that do not look good.

**If you do not have an emulsion blender, it is more than ok to use a blender or food processor (just make sure you do not place boiling hot mixtures into the appliances)

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