Two years ago, I wrote a post about making chicken stock according to a recipe by Julia Child. I have been using that recipe ever since, every time I roast a chicken. After degreasing the stock, I freeze it and then use it for various purposes, like making vegetable soups.
Two precious findings at the farmers' market suggested that I make leek and potato soup. I had seen a recipe for it in "Julia's Kitchen Wisdom," the same source of the chicken stock recipe mentioned above, and decided it was the right time to try it. Child describes this as one of the basic — "primal" — soups.
Seeing leeks at the market surprised me, since this leek lover knows that the summer crop usually becomes available later. The farmer was also surprised about the early crop, but since the leeks were ready to be harvested, he did and brought them to market. Delighted, I bought two (they were not thick, but quite long).
When I saw a basket of a variety of potato called All Red, with pink flesh, I had to try it. The color is beautiful.
Back to the recipe, it calls for 3 cups of sliced leeks (white and tender green parts), 3 cups of peeled and roughly chopped "baking" potatoes and 6 cups of water. I used the following ingredients:
- 4 and 1/4 cups sliced leeks (white and tender green parts)
- 2 and 1/4 cups of roughly chopped All Red potatoes (carefully scrubbed, not peeled)
- 3 1/2 cups homemade light chicken stock
- 2 1/2 cups water
I put all the ingredients in my soup pot and brought to a boil, then simmered, partially covered, until the vegetables were tender (22 minutes). I let the soup cool slightly, then puréed with my immersion blender. I added sea salt and freshly ground black pepper according to my taste. When dinner time rolled around, I reheated the soup and served it with freshly grated Montasio cheese of my own production (formaggio montasio grattugiato). The cheese is sweet, since I aged it for a relatively short time: it paired well with the soup's flavor.
From the photo, you can see how the potatoes influenced the color of the soup. What you cannot gather from the photo is that it was really good.
Click on the button to hear me pronounce the Italian words mentioned in the post:
or launch the zuppa di porri e patate audio file [mp3].