Wednesday, September 8, 2010

A Better Bittman Recipe: Potato Leek Soup

Fall is knocking at the door and I'm ready to let it in! Hearty soups, bountiful winter squash, apple picking, pumpkin carving...I love autumn!

As I was laying in bed feeling guilty over mentioning my lackluster experience with Mark Bittman's fried okra recipe, I was trying to recall a special Bittman inspired recipe to feature that uses some local fall ingredients. There are so many good ones to choose from.

Then I tried to narrow it down to a recipe that uses at least one major ingredient I am growing in my own backyard. Eureka! I still have an entire plot of potatoes from Seed Savers that will be ready to harvest this fall!

How about Potato Leek Soup?! My version tastes a little like clam chowder without the fish. I don't puree the potatoes and I add cream.

Potato Leek Soup
inspired by Mark Bittman's Potato and Leek Soup
makes 4 servings

2 Tbsp butter
3 leeks (or 1 leek and 1 large chopped onion), white and light green parts sliced thin
3 medium potatoes, diced
2 cups chicken broth
2 cups water
1/2 cup heavy cream

-Saute the leeks (and onion, if applicable) and potatoes in butter for 5 minutes in a stock pot or dutch oven
-Add chicken broth and water and bring to a boil
-Once boiling, turn down to simmer, cover and cook for about 20 minutes or until potatoes are cooked
-Add cream (this is also optional, but to me it makes a world of difference)

A word of caution, if you reheat this soup, please don't bring it to hard boil and burn the cream.

Unfortunately, I know my homegrown potatoes aren't quite ready to harvest yet, because the green plants growing out of the top are still green and strong. It is best to harvest potatoes after the top plant has turned brown or yellow and died back. Many people wait until after the first frost if they can.

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