Potato Leek Soup

It’s the tail end of Winter.  It’s late February, and here in grand West Virginia, it’s not quite snow temperatures, but still cold.  Spring is just outside of our grasp, taunting us with little flashes of warm weather.  Birds chirping.  Snow melting.

It doesn’t change the fact that it’s still freaking cold, yet I wanted a quick taste of spring while still warming the bones.  A hearty soup with a quick zip of fresh vegetables.  That is where potato leek soup comes in.  Read on!

You will need:

3-4 fresh leeks

1/2 yellow onion, finely diced

2 tablespoons of real butter

4 cups chicken broth

3 russet potatoes, diced

1 cup half and half

salt and pepper to taste

Begin by preparing the leeks.  Cut off the root end and discard, then cut off the tough, dark green leaves, leaving the tender white and light green portion of the leek.  Cut this part in half and gently rinse out any dirt.  Thinly slice up the leek.

In a large stock pot, pour in all of the chicken stock.  Just dump it in there.  Then, add your potatoes and bring it to a simmer.

Throw the butter into a skillet and add the leek and onion to it once it’s melted.  Saute the onion and leek until it softens.  Add this to the simmering potato-chicken stock mixture in the stock pot.  Cook this all together until the potatoes are cooked through.  Turn the heat to low.

Now here comes the fun part.  If you have an immersion blender (lucky you) get it out and blend up the contents of the soup.  Blend it all together.  If you want to leave chunks of potatoes and leek, that’s awesome.  If not, you can make it silky smooth too.  Personal preference.

For those of us who are deprived of an immersion blender, you’ll need to do batches in a regular blender.  I got GE’s answer to the Magic Bullet for Christmas, so I used that.  I worked in batches, pureeing the soup, though I left chunks of potato and leek in mine.  You can do as you please, of course.

When you have finished with this step, add your half and half.  Stir it in and bring the soup back to steaming hot.  Ladle the soup into bowl and add salt and pepper to taste.  Garnish with parsley.

A satisfying bowl of soup with a hint of springtime.  A taste of things to come.  Warming both the body and the soul.

Poetic, no?

Also, this soup can be made vegetarian by substituting veggie broth for the chicken broth.