Monday, December 20, 2010

Leek and Potato Soup

Last night I felt like eating something warm and soothing, to take the edge off the chilly weather we've been experiencing.  There's nothing like a hearty soup or stew on a cold winter's night to warm the bones.  Here's my version of leek and potato soup that doesn't require any flour or cream for thickening.

Leek and Potato Soup

2 leeks, cleaned and sliced thinly
2 medium-large potatoes, cubed
**I use white or yellow potatoes with a thin skin so that I don't have to peel them
2 cloves garlic, minced
4 cups vegetable or chicken broth (1 box of broth)
1 tsp. dried, mixed herbs (or 1/2 tsp. rosemary and 1/2 tsp. thyme)
olive oil
salt and pepper

6 mushrooms (button or cremini), diced
1/2 zucchini, diced
1/2 orange or red bell pepper, diced
1/2 onion, diced
salt and pepper

1- In a large pot, pour enough olive oil to lightly coat the bottom.  Over medium heat, saut√© the garlic and leeks until soft, approx. 5 minutes.
2- Add cubed potatoes and stir to coat.  Add herbs, and season with salt and pepper.  Cook another 5 minutes.
3- Pour in broth, bring to a boil and then lower heat.  Let simmer 15 minutes, or until potatoes are cooked through and soft.
4- While soup is cooking, pour 1 tbsp. oil in a pan and cook garlic, onion, mushrooms, pepper and zucchini until just cooked through.  Lightly salt and pepper.  Remove from heat.
5- When soup is ready,  blend with an immersion blender or in a blender until desired smoothness is reached.  If soup is too thick, add a little more water or broth.  Ladle into warm bowls and top with some of the sauteed vegetables.  Adjust seasonings and serve.

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