Russet potatoes and leeks are slow simmered in chicken stock and cream before being blended into a luxurious, silky smooth soup.
2 lbs. (about 3 large) leeks
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/2 cup sliced shallots
1/3 cup sliced onions
1 lb. (about 1 large) Russet potato, peeled
1 tablespoon minced garlic
5.5-6.5 cups chicken (or vegetable) broth
3/4 cup heavy cream
1 tablespoon kosher salt
2 teaspoons freshly ground pepper
Fresh OR dry herbs: 2 sprigs thyme, 1/2 cup minced chives, 2 sprigs parsley, 2 bay leaves
Prep Time: 30min | Cook Time: 45min
Cutaway and discard the dark green leaves and roots from the leeks, leaving only the white and palest green sections. Then cut them lengthwise and rinse in water to get rid of the dirt. Chop the leeks into pieces about 1/4 inch wide.
Melt the butter over medium heat in the sauté pan, and add the leeks, onions, and shallots. Season generously with salt and pepper. Cook the vegetables over medium heat for about 3-5 minutes. They should wilt but not brown.
Meanwhile, cut the potato lengthwise into quarters, then cut crosswise into strips about 1/4-inch thick.
If using a cheesecloth to make a sachet, wrap the thyme, parsley, bay leaves and some fresh-ground pepper in the cheesecloth and secure with twine. If not using cheesecloth, make sure the herbs are finely chopped (excluding the bay leaf).
Add the garlic and cook for about another minute, and then add the potatoes and sachet/ herbs to cook for another 2 to 4 minutes.
Add the chicken broth to the mixture. Stir, and taste to adjust seasonings as needed. Bring the pan to a simmer, then reduce the heat in order to simmer for 30 minutes. Cover the pan with foil.
After 30 minutes, remove the soup from the heat and let it stand and cool for 15 minutes. Remove the sachet (if using) as well as any herb sprigs or leaves.
In batches, carefully puree the soup until fine. Be sure the lid is securely fastened to your blender before pureeing!
Return the soup to the rinsed-out pan and bring to a simmer. Add the heavy cream and simmer for 5 minutes.
To Serve: Ladle the soup into bowls and drizzle with olive oil, a sprinkling of chopped chives and some freshly ground pepper. Serve immediately.
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