Perfect Potato And Leek Soup
I first learnt to make this classic potato and leek soup at school from a no nonsense Lancashire woman. She believed that if we could make soup, biscuits and a victoria sponge we would be set up for life.
I rarely make cake or biscuits but I do make soup, and in particular I make her wonderful potato and leek soup.
The recipe requires a little more effort than opening a can, but the result is worth it, and tastes light years away from anything that I can buy.
Here Are The Basic Principles Of All Soup Making
You can apply this basic recipe to almost any soup that you can think of. You can make it hearty and filling or fragrantly delicate using whatever vegetables, meat and seasonings you fancy.
- Chop vegetables/meat/fish
- Saute till soft
- Add stock and seasoning
- Blend (optional)
- Serve with appropriate accompaniment such as chopped herbs/croutons/bread/a swirl of cream
The Easy Way To Blend Soup
I find that using a hand blender makes soup making really easy. No more waiting for the liquid to cool before blending or worrying that the liquid will shoot out and burn me if I don't.
It also puts an end to the messy business of ladling the stuff into the blender and cleaning up afterwards. You just plunge the blender into the saucepan and blend away.
You definitely get what you pay for when buying a hand blender. Some of the cheaper models don't have the power to really tackle the job and they don't offer the options that this blender does. For a little more outlay you can get an extremely versatile tool.
This model comes with interchangeable heads for blending, chopping and mixing. We use the chopper on ours to make perfect green salsas, nut butters and ground coffee.
Tips to make this potato and leek soup really tasty
- The use of bacon rind when sauteing the vegetables. (Meat eaters use free range bacon, but vegetarians can substitute 50/50 oil and butter.)
- Sauteing the vegetables properly before adding the liquid, That means cooking them in a pot with the lid on, shaking the pot periodically to stop them catching and burning. Apart from the tiny bit of oil/fat you start with, the vegetables cook in the juices and steam that builds up in the closed pan.
- Using a freshly made bouquet garni. Tie up a bunch of any herbs you fancy, and fish out before blending. Traditionally the bunch includes sprigs of Thyme and a Bay leaf.
Once you've cooked with Le Creuset you know you'll never want to use anything else ever again. It cooks superbly and lasts a lifetime. Apart from that it just looks so beautiful in the kitchen and on the table.
- Prep time: 20 min
- Cook time: 40 min
- Ready in: 1 hour
- Yields: 2
- 1.5 lb potatoes
- 1 leek
- 1 onion
- bacon rinds
- 1 pt milk (more or less to make the consistency you prefer)
- knob of butter
- bouquet garni
- chopped parseley
- Peel and chop good quality mashing potatoes into half inch cubes
- Clean and slice the leek into quarter inch slices
- Slice the onion finely
- Heat bacon rind gently in a large saucepan with the lid on until the fat is melted
- Add a knob of butter and allow to melt
- Add the onion to the pan, put the lid on tightly and saute for 5 minutes on a low heat
- Add the leeks and potato cubes, put the lid on again, and saute till soft (usually about twenty minutes)
- Periodically lift the lid and check that nothing is catching. Lower the heat further if this is happening.
- When the vegetables are soft, add the milk and the bouquet garni and bring to a gentle simmer for 10 minutes
- Fish out the bacon rind and bouquet garni
- Season to taste with salt and black pepper
- Swirl in another knob of butter and a dash of cream (optional)
- Serve garnished with finely chopped parsely or coriander
I love the vibrant colours of the Tequila Sunrise collection. I want my soup served in these bowls from now on.