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Ren's Potato Leek Mushroom Soup

Updated on December 30, 2016

As Good as Restaurant Soup!

I love making soups and chili when the weather turns colder. They seem to warm the soul when the bones are chilled! The other day we went to The Olive Garden Restaurant and had the yummiest potato porcini mushroom soup (it's seasonal right now so go try some if you get the chance). Of course, they weren't about to give out a new recipe, at least not yet, so I had to come up with my own. Dare I say, I came pretty close considering I didn't have any porcini mushrooms handy.

This recipe can be made completely vegetarian or not. I'm not a vegetarian, but I dated a guy in high school whose family was, and they taught me a ton of great dishes. My son has also never been a big meat eater so we shy away from heavy meat dishes aside from skinless chicken. For that matter, I don't eat much meat either (aside from the chicken and fish). Sadly, we have a much harder time cutting out cheese and dairy but we still eat a lot of vegetables. How many kids do you know who say their favorite vegetable is broccoli? Because of this, I love to experiment with cooking and coming up with my own recipes and tweaking those of others. I hope you'll try this one because I think it turned out just as good as the restaurant version! Let me know what you think if you make it!

All photos © 2013 Ren During

How to Become a Good Cook!

I've never had any formal training in cooking, unless you want to count watching Julia Child on PBS as a kid. I began cooking around the age of 8-years-old. I don't mean just heating up soup from a can or using the new fancy microwave that was all the rage then, I mean cooking. I would search the Joy of Cooking cookbook my mother owned, but only used for Thanksgiving stuffing, write out a grocery list and she'd buy what I needed.

Basic cooking isn't really so difficult, it requires the desire to want to cook and one key ingredient: LOVE. I love to cook, that's all it is. It brings me joy, relaxation and in the end I usually have something yummy to eat!

Creating your own recipes or mimicking one takes more than basics, however. I scour the Internet for recipes and then alter them to suit our tastes. This also gives me an idea of what herbs and spices go together. I use my nose a lot with spices because it's better than my memory of what will compliment what. Cooking shows have become all the rage so it's easy to get tips on techniques used in cooking. Other than a few skills, it just takes practice.

So do you want to make some soup?
Well let's get started!

Ingredients!

Ingredients
Ingredients

To keep it vegetarian, please substitute vegetable broth for the chicken broth and leave out the cream shown in the picture. You may opt to substitute soy milk if you so desire.

Cook Time

Prep time: 30 min
Cook time: 1 hour 30 min
Ready in: 2 hours
Yields: 6-8 servings

Ingredients

  • 3 large russet potatoes - halved and sliced
  • 3 medium to large Yukon Gold potatoes - halved and sliced
  • 2 - 3 large leeks, thinly sliced
  • 2 - 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 stalk of celery, diced (or more if desired)
  • 3 - 6 mushrooms, white, porcini or baby portabello)
  • 3 - 5 TBSP olive oil or butter
  • 32 - 46oz vegetable or chicken stock
  • 1 tsp thyme, (or more) to taste
  • to taste basil, to taste
  • to taste marjoram, to taste
  • to taste salt & pepper, to taste
  • small amount flour or cornstarch, if needed to thicken soup
  • 1 cup heavy cream, - soy or reg milk can be subsitituted

Instructions

  1. Clean potatoes because you'll be keeping the skins on. I rubbed mine with the back of a fork to get off any heavy dirt. Trim off any bad spots. Then cut the potatoes in half lengthwise before slicing them into 1/4 inch slices. Don't worry if they are not evenly as you will want some to cook faster and break up to make the broth thicker. I even cut some of the slices in half to help the process.
  2. Rinse potatoes and place into a large stock pot. Cover with vegetable stock. You may add a bit more water if needed but you only want just cover the potatoes. Cover and cook over medium heat. As they cook you will be able to stir them and begin breaking them up into smaller pieces. (at least 20-30 min) This will start to thicken the soup.
  3. Dice up the celery into small pieces and add to the boiling potatoes.
  4. Cut the green leafy part and rough root end from the leeks, before cutting them lengthwise and rinsing. Next slice them as thinly as possible.
  5. Clean the mushrooms (removing the stems if desired) and thinly slice. I find it easier to slice them with the caps down.
  6. Prepare a sauté pan with melted butter or olive oil (not both) and sauté the leeks and garlic until soft and clear, then add in the mushrooms and the desired amount of thyme (I used about a teaspoon of dried thyme since I didn't have any fresh on hand) sauté until the mushrooms are soft. Add this to the pot with the potatoes, mixing it together with the potatoes and continuing to break up more chunks to thicken the soup.
  7. Next, taste the soup. Add in the desired amount of salt, pepper, marjoram, basil or other seasonings you may desire.
  8. If the soup is not thick enough you may do a couple of things to thicken it. You can break up more potatoes until it's to your likeness. You may make a mixture of water and flour or cornstarch and slowly add it to the soup until it thickens. You may also add in cream or milk (possibly soy milk though I haven't tried that) to thicken it as well. I find the thickness of soup is a very personal thing. Some people like a thinner soup and some people like more of a stew. You decide what works best for you.
5 stars from 1 rating of Ren's Potato Leek Mushroom Soup

Making the Soup!!!

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Potatoes cleaned and cut lengthwise.Potatoes sliced evenly ~ some cut in half again so they'll break up easily to thicken the soup.Covered in stock and beginning to cook. Don't forget to cover the pot!After the potatoes have cooked at least 25 minutes, I added the diced celery. Look at that steam!Thinly sliced leeks and garlic all sauteed.Mushrooms added in (I didn't use many since my son doesn't like them ~ though he's decided he does in this recipe). I wish I could have found porcini.All sauteed together with the thyme and some marjoram.The finished soup along with the addition of salt, pepper, fresh basil and corn starch to thicken it just a touch!Ready to eat! My son added a small dollop of sour cream (gasp) and cheese and I added a touch of fresh Parmesan to mine (sorry, we love cheese!).
Potatoes cleaned and cut lengthwise.
Potatoes cleaned and cut lengthwise.
Potatoes sliced evenly ~ some cut in half again so they'll break up easily to thicken the soup.
Potatoes sliced evenly ~ some cut in half again so they'll break up easily to thicken the soup.
Covered in stock and beginning to cook. Don't forget to cover the pot!
Covered in stock and beginning to cook. Don't forget to cover the pot!
After the potatoes have cooked at least 25 minutes, I added the diced celery. Look at that steam!
After the potatoes have cooked at least 25 minutes, I added the diced celery. Look at that steam!
Thinly sliced leeks and garlic all sauteed.
Thinly sliced leeks and garlic all sauteed.
Mushrooms added in (I didn't use many since my son doesn't like them ~ though he's decided he does in this recipe). I wish I could have found porcini.
Mushrooms added in (I didn't use many since my son doesn't like them ~ though he's decided he does in this recipe). I wish I could have found porcini.
All sauteed together with the thyme and some marjoram.
All sauteed together with the thyme and some marjoram.
The finished soup along with the addition of salt, pepper, fresh basil and corn starch to thicken it just a touch!
The finished soup along with the addition of salt, pepper, fresh basil and corn starch to thicken it just a touch!
Ready to eat! My son added a small dollop of sour cream (gasp) and cheese and I added a touch of fresh Parmesan to mine (sorry, we love cheese!).
Ready to eat! My son added a small dollop of sour cream (gasp) and cheese and I added a touch of fresh Parmesan to mine (sorry, we love cheese!).

Name Your Favorite Soup!

Bowl of Ren's Potato Leek Mushroom Soup!
Bowl of Ren's Potato Leek Mushroom Soup!

What's your favorite type of soup?

See results

So what do you think of this soup? - Do you plan on trying it?

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    • Lynn Klobuchar profile image

      Lynn Klobuchar 3 years ago from Minneapolis, Minnesota

      This sounds glorious. And I would be able to eat all of it myself because of the mushroom "babies" in the house. Sometimes I finely chop mushrooms and add them anyway because they add such flavor. I have never met a mushroom I haven't loved.

    • PNWtravels profile image

      Vicki Green 3 years ago from Wandering the Pacific Northwest USA

      Soup season has definitely arrived in the Pacific Northwest so I'm all over this recipe. Thanks for sharing!

    • profile image

      tonyleather 3 years ago

      Sounds delicious!

    • profile image

      nbs255501 3 years ago

      да

    • Johanna Eisler profile image

      Johanna Eisler 3 years ago

      This looks wonderful, and I look forward to trying it. With cold weather just around the corner, it's a perfect time to collect soup recipes!

    • profile image

      julieannbrady 3 years ago

      I think this soup sounds delicious - would love to try some!

    • somebudiesangel2 profile image

      Tami-Lynn 3 years ago from North Vancouver

      looks very tasty:) I make one similar!

    • lesliesinclair profile image

      lesliesinclair 3 years ago

      It looks scrumptious but nightshade family veggies no longer work for me, but maybe I could modify it.

    • GeorgeneMBramlage profile image

      Georgene Moizuk Bramlage 3 years ago from southwestern Virginia

      This soup reads like it would be a fantastic autumn or winter soup. it combines two of my favorite ingredients. I'll have to put this on my "to-do" list.

    • Pam Irie profile image

      Pam Irie 3 years ago from Land of Aloha

      I make a potato and leek soup, but hadn't thought of adding mushrooms. I will now. :)

    • AcornOakForest profile image

      Monica Lobenstein 3 years ago from Western Wisconsin

      Looks delicious! Pinning it for later. Thanks!

    • girlfriendfactory profile image
      Author

      girlfriendfactory 3 years ago

      @writerkath: It's very easy and I'm sure you could do it!

    • suepogson profile image

      suepogson 3 years ago

      Yes - has two of my favourite ingredients - potatoes and mushrooms so I'll certainly give it a go.

    • writerkath profile image

      writerkath 3 years ago

      This definitely looks delicious! I do believe that this is within my skill set! :) Looks great!

    • girlfriendfactory profile image
      Author

      girlfriendfactory 3 years ago

      @CSBSEWS: Oh yeah, I hope you love it as much as we do! Let me know!

    • girlfriendfactory profile image
      Author

      girlfriendfactory 3 years ago

      @anonymous: I hope you do try it and let me know your opinion!

    • girlfriendfactory profile image
      Author

      girlfriendfactory 3 years ago

      @VictoriaHolt: Thanks so much for the compliment! Did you end up making it?

    • girlfriendfactory profile image
      Author

      girlfriendfactory 3 years ago

      @Erin Mellor: Nothing except it was gone way too quickly! lol

    • girlfriendfactory profile image
      Author

      girlfriendfactory 3 years ago

      @Kailua-KonaGirl: I nearly did olive oil and butter but didn't want to risk it with creating a new recipe from scratch. My son doesn't (or didn't) like mushrooms so that's why I used the smallest amount. The recipe does have 4 cloves of minced garlic but no carrots ~ that is a great thought! The wonderful thing about a good recipe is how easy it is to customize! :-)

    • girlfriendfactory profile image
      Author

      girlfriendfactory 3 years ago

      @changrcoacher: Thanks so much! It tasted yummy, too!

    • girlfriendfactory profile image
      Author

      girlfriendfactory 3 years ago

      @Diana Wenzel: I'm sorry ~ we already ate ours up! But I can make more if you'd like ~ or you can, of course! Let me know if you do!

    • girlfriendfactory profile image
      Author

      girlfriendfactory 3 years ago

      @captainj88: Thank you! I hope you get a chance to make some!

    • girlfriendfactory profile image
      Author

      girlfriendfactory 3 years ago

      @DebMartin: Isn't autumn the best for this! I love when it turns colder just so I can make heart-warming soup and my famous chili!

    • girlfriendfactory profile image
      Author

      girlfriendfactory 3 years ago

      @ChocolateLily: We sure loved it and I hope you do if you get a chance to try it. Or stop by and I'll make some if you get up to No. Cali!

    • girlfriendfactory profile image
      Author

      girlfriendfactory 3 years ago

      @suepogson: If you do, please let me know what you think!

    • profile image

      ChocolateLily 3 years ago

      Yummy! I think I would love this one!

    • profile image

      DebMartin 3 years ago

      Makes me want to make a batch right now. Love this time of year for soups and chowders.

    • captainj88 profile image

      Leah J. Hileman 3 years ago from East Berlin, PA, USA

      What a great flavor combination!

    • Diana Wenzel profile image

      Renaissance Woman 3 years ago from Colorado

      Oh yes... I want some right this very minute!

    • profile image

      changrcoacher 3 years ago

      Repeat here....Yes, looks delicious!

    • Kailua-KonaGirl profile image

      June Parker 3 years ago from New York

      When I make mine I do use both olive oil and butter, I love the flavor and thickness cream provides (Iuse half and half) and I don't waste the mushroom stems by cutting off. I also add garlic, minced fine, a wee bit of grated carrot, a bay leaf and a wee bit of dry sherry. Yum.

    • Erin Mellor profile image

      Erin Mellor 3 years ago from Europe

      That looks great. I love leek and potato soup and I love mushrooms - what's not to like!

    • VictoriaHolt profile image

      VictoriaHolt 3 years ago

      I am going to try this. I just now remembered that I have to take soup to a Dinner and a Broadcast event tomorrow night! Panic! This sounds delicious, and I just ate. I've never cooked leeks before, but your directions are great.

    • profile image

      anonymous 3 years ago

      Yummy lens, and yes I think I might try it! I saw your lens featured on the New Giant Squid Lenses Week of 9/23

    • CSBSEWS profile image

      Carolyn Bennett 3 years ago from Longview, Washington

      Saved this to my recipe file for the first cold snap...Yum.