Monday, 13 January 2014

Potato and Leek Soup

I think it would be true to say then her in Ireland we often get our harshest weather right after the festive period, with that in mind I think that there is nothing better than a hearty soup. Don't get me wrong I love nothing more than warming up to a bowl of soup on chilly days, it gives me the excuse to light the fire and watch something on Netflix!

This is a frugal soup that will fill your stomach but won't empty your pockets, especially now as leeks are in season until April. When buying leeks be sure to get the best, not the floppy limp ones, yours should be firm and vibrant. So keep up those new year resolutions and try this healthy and nutritious soup today!  

Serves 4-5

Knob of butter 
1 Onion, peeled and roughly chopped
500g Leeks (3/4 medium stalks), trimmed
650g-700g Potatoes (4 medium potatoes), peeled and cut into rough chunks
Hot chicken stock

Prepare the onion and place it into a large saucepan with the knob of butter. Cover and cook gently over a medium heat without colouring for 4-5 minutes or until the onion has softened and become slightly translucent. 

Carefully place the tip of a sharp kitchen knife about 4cms from the root end of each leek, slice the leek towards the green leafy end, turn the leek 90ยบ and repeat. Your leek should now be cut into quarters but still remain intact, rinse the leek under cold running water, this will make it easier to wash the grit from the inner leaves without the leeks falling apart. Once thoroughly washed, chop the leeks into 1cm chucks, add them to the onions, cover and sweat for 5-6 minutes or until they have softened.

Prepare the potatoes and cut into roughly the same size chunks so that they all cook at the same time. Add the potatoes to the saucepan and stirring quickly to prevent them from sticking to the base of the pan and burning, cook for one minute.

Add enough chicken stock to cover all the vegetables, cover and simmer over a medium heat for 12-15 minutes or until the potatoes are tender.

When the vegetables are completely cooked, whizz with a hand blender (I couldn't live without my hand blender!!) or carefully transfer to a liquidiser and blend until smooth, adding more chicken stock to thin if necessary. Taste, season and reheat if needed. Serve piping hot for an instant warming lunch with your favourite crusty bread or with a toastie!  

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