I like soup on cold days.
In these coming hard times… learn to make soup!
I found a great special the other day for leeks, that excellent vegetable so beloved of the Welsh.
I was inspired to make Potato Leek Soup.
Be sure to wash the grit out of the leeks.
I made a little bouquet garni from thyme and rosemary and added a bay leaf, which you will see below.
Start with butter. If you want to have a bit more depth, use a little bacon, which you would remove.
That is handy also for starting risotto.
You can use olive oil if you want. Remember, it’s soup. Be flexible and find what works best for you and your tastes.
Chop your leeks and put them in the pan… I added a little onion I needed to use.
Don’t use too much of the green if you don’t want greenish soup.
Cut the potatoes into small pieces. Even large pieces will cook, don’t worry.
In the meantime, your leeks are softening. Move ‘em around.
Add the potatoes and a pinch of salt.
Cover the veg with chicken broth and put in the herbs and the bay leaf.
If you want, you can use a long strip cut from a long leek leaf as a string for the bouquet garni.
I was too lazy and just rinsed of the twist tie. Sometimes I use (unflavored) dental floss.
The idea is this: make it so that you can pull it out. And be careful: when herbs like rosemary or sage hit liquid, they can take over.
Cook it down for a while.
Keep your heat low and stir it so that it doesn’t darken or burn.
At this point you can go in several directions.
You can leave it sort of rustic and serve it like this. In that case I would add some cream or milk to taste and consistency.
You can puree it. I did.
Again, you can go with some cream. I used a little reduction I made from sun-dried tomato and a touch of sour cream.
Add some "personality" through a tiny sprig of rosemary or little sticks cut from the leek.
Yummy stuff. Super easy. Very fast. Nearly impossible to screw up so long as you keep the heat low while reducing.
Don’t be afraid simply to make it without fussing over a recipe. It’s soup. Fool around with it.
You could pair this with a Chardonnay.
It’ll freeze, btw.
I’m off to lunch.