despite some clear, sunny days this past week, i have noticed the chill that sneaks into the air in the mornings. and i definitely couldn’t ignore the wind that has once again started blowing off the hudson river and right up our street. for the moment i find these crisp breezes invigorating. after all, they bring fresh air with notes of wet leaves, rather than the hot breezes of summer that smell of subways and trash. but i know that soon i will be cursing the cold and running for the door to our building every time i get to our block. so i’ve been brushing up on my soup recipes in an attempt to keep myself warm this fall and winter.
of course, the soup you crave in the fall is going to be different than what you crave come the depths of winter. fall soups are about light flavors and broths, as opposed to the hearty stew-like soups of winter. and what better ingredients for a fall soup than the beautiful potatoes and the flavorful leeks that are being harvested and sold in abundance? my favorite potato and leek soup recipe is so easy to make, it’s ready in less than an hour, and the combination of simple but rich flavors stays delicious for a few days, if you happen to have any left over.
potato and leek soup
4-5 lbs leeks, cut in half vertically, then cut into 1″ pieces (use all the white part and about 3″ of the light green, and be sure to wash leeks thoroughly; the dirt likes to hide between the layers)
6 tbsp butter
1.5 lbs waxy potatoes (red or yellow), cut into 1/2″ dice (i like to leave the skins on for the extra nutrients)
5 1/2 cups broth (i like better than bouillon’s organic vegetable base, but your favorite chicken or vegetable broth will work just fine)
1 tbsp flour
1 bay leaf
salt and fresh ground white pepper
1. heat the butter in a large soup pot, over medium heat, until foaming. add the leeks, and cook covered, stirring occasionally, until they begin to soften, about 15 minutes.
2. sprinkle the flour over the leeks to form a roux, and stir to distribute evenly for about 2 minutes.
3. slowly pour in the broth while stirring to keep the roux from creating lumps.
4. add the potatoes and the bay leaf. turn heat to high, bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer, covered, for about 5-7 minutes, or until potatoes are just barely tender all the way through. turn off the heat and leave covered for another 15 minutes. add salt and freshly ground white pepper to taste, then serve!
roux: a thickening agent created by cooking flour with a fat, such as butter or oil.
bought an extra sack of potatoes at the market? use them in these delicious recipes:
Taste With The Eyes: Poached Salmon, Lobster Mash, Lentil Gumbo “Gravy”
And Love It Too: Twice Baked Potato – Paleo Style
What’s Gaby Cooking: Smashed Potatoes
From My Corner of Saratoga: Potato Canapes
Napa Farmhouse 1885: Chorizo and Potato Tacos
Cooking Channel: Cozy Up With In Season Potatoes
FN Dish: Best Potato Casserole Recipes
Cooking With Elise: The Irish Boxty
CIA Dropout: Potato and Leek Soup
The Sensitive Epicure: Potatoes Anna With Fresh Thyme and Truffle Salt
Glory Foods: Chicken Smashed Potatoes
Daily*Dishin: Creamy Loaded Potato Casserole
Virtually Vegan Mama: Baked Cinnamon Spiced Sweet Potato Fries