Thursday, 25 November 2010

Leek & Potato Soup

Leeks and potatoes; a classic soup. I was a bit surprised I haven't posted about this before. Mr. Ferdzy really loves this and has been lobbying for it for a while. I used Alaska Sweetheart potatoes, which have pinkish flesh and so if you look closely you will see that the soup is also a bit pink. Nice! But you can use any starchy potato you like. I am lazy and leave the peels on but it is more traditional and makes a smoother soup to peel them. Up to you. If you decide to leave them on, they should be well scrubbed, and don't leave them too big. Guess who did.

8 servings
1 hour prep time

Leek and Potato Soup
1.5 kilos (3 pounds) starchy potatoes
1 teaspoon salt
2 or 3 bay leaves
1 litre water
3 or 4 large leeks (6 cups once chopped)
3 or 4 shallots
3 or 4 stalks of celery
1/4 cup unsalted butter
1/2 teaspoon celery seed, ground
1 teaspoon rubbed savory
pepper to taste
2 cups light cream

Scrub the potatoes well, or peel them if you like. Cut them into chunks. If you leave the peels on, make sure the pieces of peel will be bite-sized. Put them into a large pot with the salt, bay leaves and water. Boil until tender.

Meanwhile, wash, trim, chop and wash again the leeks. Drain them well. Peel and chop the shallots. Wash, trim and chop the celery.

Heat the butter in a large skillet and add the celery and shallots. Cook gently until they soften somewhat. Add the leeks, and continue cooking, stirring occassionally, until all the vegetables are very soft. They will give off a fair bit of water as they cook; cook this off, then reduce the heat as they cook as you don't really want them to brown. Watch and stir them well. Towards the end of the cooking, add the ground celery seed and the savory.

Mash the cooked potatoes in the cooking water. Add the cream, and stir in the cooked vegetables. Season with pepper to taste. Can be served at once, or made ahead and re-heated.

Last year at this time I made Pumpkin Bran Muffins and Chocolate Syrup.

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