Friday, September 16, 2011

Potato- Leek Soup

Oh boy, it's  beginning to look a lot like Autumn!  More precisely, it is beginning to feel a lot like Autumn.  The air outside is cool and crisp and the sun is doing more to keep your disposition cheery than to keep you warm.  There is cozy feeling about this time of year that can not be matched by any other season or climate.  It is warm enough to enjoy the outdoors, but cool enough to come inside, wrap yourself up in your favorite sweater and snuggle up on the couch.
This type of weather makes me crave soup.  Soup, a crusty loaf of bread, and an Oregon Pinot to be more specific.  My stand-by soup is always a silky Potato Leek.  In full disclosure, this is a not a low- cal cup of soup.  The ingredient list might be minimal, but the caloric count is most certainly not.  The good news is that it fills you up just as much as it warms you up, so its a meal by itself!  All you need to complete the experience is your favorite glass of vino and a fire to cuddle up in front of!

3-4 small to medium size russet potatoes
3 large leeks, leaves cut off so just white/light green part is remaining
6-8 cups of chicken stock (you can also substitute vegetable stock)
salt and pepper to taste
8 oz creme fraiche
3- 4 dashes of tabasco
green onion for garnish

Hand Blender, the soup maker's essential tool
Peel potatoes and dice. Don't worry too much about size because you will be blending later.  Clean and cut leeks lengthwise, then chop into small pieces.  Pour 6 oz of chicken stock into at least a 4 quart pot and cook over high heat.  (If you like a thinner soup pour in all 8 oz) Add potatoes and leeks and bring to a boil.  Reduce the heat to medium and cook until the potatoes are soft.   Bring heat down to a low simmer; if you have a hand blender, immerse in pot and blend until the soup is completely smooth.  (If you do not have a hand blender, remove soup from heat and in batches puree in a counter blender; when finished return to pot.) Add salt and pepper to taste then stir in creme fraiche until its is fully blended and gives the soup a silky texture.  Add a few dashes of tabasco for a subtle kick and stir.


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