Friday, March 26, 2010

Bouchon Potato Leek Soup -- Take 2

It was a bit chilly today, with a blustery wind and I felt some soup was in order. As you may remember, I tried this once before. I had a bunch of leftover leeks from making the brunoise the other day and thought I'd try again. This time I stood, unwavering, by my pan and stirred my little spoon off. Nothing like a little soup making to get one's self out of a funk. Yes, soup is my favorite comfort food when I'm having a pity party. Whether it's Pho or Matzoh ball soup, Italian wedding soup or Potato-Leek or Chicken tortilla (the list is endless), soup is my favorite food of all time. So here we go on our "If at first you don't succeed, try try again" adventure.  CR- we will explore this later LOL

The cast of characters:
Leeks, shallots, onions, garlic, chives, 1 potato, 5-6 c chicken stock, a sachet of leek leaves, thyme, bay leaves and peppercorns, some butter and salt and pepper, 3/4 c cream and a little olive oil for garnish.

I will never understand why this is called Potato-Leek soup. The onion team clearly out-numbers the Spuds.

Melt the butter and throw in the leeks, shallots and onions, season with S&P Let them sweat over medium heat for about 5 minutes Stand by your pan! 

Add the garlic and cook another minute.
Add the sachet and the potato (sliced) and cook about 5 min.

Add the chicken stock and bring to simmer, cook until potatoes are tender, about 30 min.

When tender, remove and discard the sachet. Then, working in batches, ladle a small portion of the soup into a blender and starting on a slow speed, slowly work your way up to the fastest speed until it's pureed, placing each batch into a cleaned pan. Just one pan, but a clean one LOL.

Bring it to a simmer and add the warmed cream. If you are serving the soup warm, stir in the chopped chives, reserving enough to garnish each bowl.

To plate, ladel into the bowl and garnish with chives, a grind of pepper and a little drizzle of olive oil.

This is a wonderful soup, so smooth and creamy. The leeks add a tang and the cream a touch of sweetness. Even though the Spud Team was far outnumbered, It certainly held it's own. Potatoes are the best EVER!
I read in Cook's Illustrated that this recipe was the first one Julia Child chose for her tome Mastering the Art of French Cooking. It is an easy soup, really, and can be served hot or cold (as Vichysoisse). Definite make again, and I laughed when I read all the Cook's Illustrated research... All they needed to do was read the Bouchon Cookbook because that's exactly what they ended up with.

Soup = Home = Love = Life
See you soon.

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