Just Like Dad Used to Make it (but better)

This winter has been strange, no doubt about it. I’ve been trying to take advantage of the occasional cold, wintery days we’ve been having by making soup. Staring out your window and watching the snow fall is always so much more pleasant when you’re eating a warm bowl of soup. Canned soups contain so much sodium you might as well have ordered Chinese food instead. Soups are very easy to make and often are a great meal to try if you need to multi task because you can put them on the stove and let the flavor build while you feed your dog, do the laundry and answer some final emails of the day.

My dad didn’t do much of the cooking I was growing up, but he had a great potato leek soup recipe up his sleeve and it always warmed me up, inside and out. My own recipe for potato leek soup is one of my favorites because it contains very few ingredients and packs a punch with flavor. Want to simplify it even more? Skip the mushrooms and garnish your soup with a sprinkle of sea salt and chili peppers.

potato leek soup

Potato Leek Soup with Crispy Mushrooms & Scallions

Serving Size: 2 – 4

Total Time: 45 Minutes

Difficulty: Easy

Equipment:

  • a cutting board
  • a sharp knife
  • a peeler
  • a medium saucepan
  • a sauté pan
  • a blender or emersion blender

Ingredients:

Soup

  • 2 leeks, white parts only, cut in half, cleaned and sliced
  • 1 medium carrot, quartered and thinly sliced
  • 1 clove garlic, sliced
  • 4 medium boiling potatoes, peeled and cut into eighths
  • 2 tbs white wine vinegar
  • 1 quart chicken stock
  • 2 tbs butter

Crispy Mushrooms

  • 4 baby bella mushrooms, thinly sliced
  • 1 tbs butter
  • 3 scallions, thinly sliced
  • salt & peper to taste

Preparation:

Heat the butter in your saucepan over medium heat and add the leeks, carrots and garlic. Cook until the leeks have softened, about five minutes. Season lightly with salt. Turn the heat up to high and add the white wine vinegar. Let it cook down until it’s almost completely evaporated. Add the chicken stock and potatoes. Bring to a boil and then reduce to a simmer. Cover, and simmer for 20 minutes.

While you soup is simmering, sauté your mushrooms. Melt the butter in the sauté pan over medium low heat and add the mushrooms. Don’t worry if the pan is slightly over crowded, the mushrooms will cook down quickly. Allow all of the water to release from the mushrooms and then turn the heat up to medium high. Salt the mushrooms and stir frequently, letting them brown on each side. Cook until mushrooms resemble crispy chips, about 10 minutes. Transfer to a paper towel and let cool.

Check your soup and make sure the potatoes are completely cooked through. Transfer to a blender (or blend with your emersion blender) and blend until the soup is completely smooth. Return to the saucepan and reheat. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Pour the soup into bowls and top with crispy mushrooms and sliced scallions. Enjoy and embrace winter!

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