Potage Parmentier “Potato Leek Soup”

Potato Leek SoupLeeks are a vegetable that I have a great love for, but are many times overlooked.  Maybe it’s because they are green, maybe it’s because many consider them like an onion- but I think leeks are a very versatile veggie. From breakfast casseroles, to soups or even used for flavoring stock…this is one vegetable you don’t want to skip.

I must becoming “well-aged” like my wine, as a recent article I read about why your 40s is the best time of your life stated that only 40-year-olds know how to cook leeks.  Maybe I’m ahead of the rest, either way you slice it, I’m happy 30ish home cook.

Today’s soup is adapted from Julia Child’s recipe and includes fresh options that are found at your local farmers market each week. Julia, who I believe is the MASTER of all cookery, says to only use water, not stock in her original recipe.  If you want the true taste of the leeks, go for it, but I prefer my local wine and stock to make this a richer soup.

Don’t forget to clean your leeks throughly, as sand and dirt is found between the skin layers. This is a step that many leek-newbies are unaware of.  Don’t skip it- or you might enjoy some sandy bites in your smooth, silky soup.

Potage Parmentier “Potato Leek Soup”

2 tablespoons canola oil
4 to 5 medium potatoes (1 pound), peeled and roughly chopped
4 large leeks (1 pound), cleaned and thinly sliced
1/2 cup of local Vidal wine
4 cups vegetable stock or a chicken stock
2 cups water
Kosher salt, to taste
1 to 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup sour cream
1/3 cup minced parsley or chivesHeat the oil in a large (6-plus quart) stockpot or dutch oven over medium heat. Add the leek and potato. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables have begun to soften and brown slightly, about 8 to 12 minutes.  Add the wine and let cook for 3 minutes, scraping the bottom of your pot.Add the vegetable stock and water and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low, and simmer for 30 to 40 minutes, or until the vegetables are tender.

Blend until smooth, either using an immersion blender or by carefully transferring to a blender in batches.  Add the cream, and season to taste with salt and lemon juice.  Ladle into bowls, and garnish with a dollop of sour cream and a healthy sprinkling of minced parsley or chives.

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