10 November 2012

recipe: leek and potato soup

When I did my semester in London 6 years ago, I had this amazing flatmate named Lauren.  We shared a kitchen with our other 4 flatmates, and at that time I wasn't much of a cook.  I could make cookies.  Big whoop.  Not the best way to go about being vegan.  Happily, Lauren made a mean leek and potato soup from her mum's recipe.  She switched out the dairy milk for soy, and BAM.  I was hooked on the stuff.

I've played around with my own recipe over the years, and - with the help of Turner's culinary genius - this is what I've had the most success with.

Leek and Potato Soup
GF - 40 minutes - serves 2-3

Olive oil
1 big leek
4 cloves garlic, chopped
1/2t thyme
1/2t marjoram
1/4t crushed red pepper
1/2t salt
Few dashes freshly-ground black pepper
1/4c white wine
2 medium-sized Yukon gold potatoes, chopped
3-4c vegetable broth
Splash of white wine vinegar (or red, if you must)

Before you do anything, I'm gonna make you wash your leek.  You don't know where that thing's been.  If you do it wrong, you'll be chopping it on your nice clean cutting board with your nice clean knife and all of a sudden - EW.  Dirt.  Lots of dirt.  Your life is ruined.

Grab your unwashed leek and chop the frilly white end off, then slice the rest of the leek into 3 shorter pieces.  Take each of those and cut them in half length-wise, so the inner layers are exposed.  You can discard the darkest green layers on the top - you only want to use the light green and white parts for cooking.  Fill a bowl with cool water and cram your leek bits in there.  Let them soak for five or more minutes.

When you take them out, check out all the dirt that settled on the bottom of your bowl!  Gross, right?  Good thing you're not smearing that all over your cutting board!

Gratuitous clean leek pictures aside, now we can move on.  Preheat some oil in your soup pot over medium heat.  Chop your leek into little half-moons.  They don't have to be any smaller than 1/2 inch because you get to puree this stuff later. Hooray!  Lazy chopping!

Toss your leek into the pot and sautee until the white bits are translucent, about 10 minutes.

Add the garlic and let it go for one minute.  Next throw down the thyme, marjoram, crushed red pepper, salt, and black pepper.

Mix it up, then add the potatoes, along with the white wine to deglaze the pot.  Turn the heat up so the wine reduces and let that bubble for up to 5 minutes, or however long it takes to evaporate.

Pour in the broth.  At this juncture, I like to add just enough to cover the potatoes, then add more later when I'm blending.  Bring it to a boil, then leave it at a simmer with your lid on for 15 minutes, until the potatoes are soft and easily smashed.  Add a splash of vinegar.

Turn off the heat and grab your best friend, the immersion blender.  (If you don't have one, use your boring blender, but don't burn yourself.  It would totally suck to have a heat blister on top of the sting of lacking an immersion blender.)  Puree to your heart's content, adding more broth or water to achieve your desired consistency.

Serve with a nice baguette!  And maybe even some garlic cheese toast.  Fancy.  Halitosis abounds.  Breathe on your cat.  See what she does.

1 comment:

  1. I think I need some right now! Auntie Ree