Classic French potato leek soup inspired by Julia Child with potatoes, leeks, chicken stock and a touch of cream, puréed through a food mill for best texture.
A few weeks ago, out to lunch with Meathead, I had a cup of potato leek soup that was so good in it's simplicity. I've never really thought about making it at home, but I've been craving it ever since.
So, out came my Julia Child's cookbook for inspiration and to see how to make Potage Parmentier, and along with a little research, I made the most delicious Potato Leek Soup at home. It's now part of my winter soup rotation, along with Sweet-and-Sour Beef Cabbage Soup and Turkey Noodle Soup.
SIMPLE INGREDIENTS FOR POTATO LEEK SOUP
It's potatoes and leeks, guys. That's pretty much it. Almost.
- russet potatoes
- bay leaf
- homemade chicken stock
- heavy cream
- snipped chives for serving
Some recipes say simmer in water, some say chicken stock. Some add cream, some do not. I chose to make mine with homemade chicken stock. I almost always have some in my freezer and I really, really like it in soups ~ it just adds depth of flavor. That said, many soups can be made with just water for the liquid, I get that and have done that. But for this soup, the chicken stock adds needed something-something to the otherwise rather bland potatoes, producing a nice flavor profile with the leeks.
As far as cream, a little goes a long way in this soup. I whisked in a few tablespoons to finish it off. I really don't think you need a lot of cream, but certainly some to gild the lily. I've also read about adding some buttermilk to the finished soup for added brightness and tang, I may try next time and see if I like that. But for now, just a little cream will suffice.
A FOOD MILL IS THE KEY FOR IDEAL TEXTURE
The key to this soup's light texture is the use of a food mill, instead of a blender or food processor. Running the potatoes through a food mill or ricer will keep the soup from having a gluey consistency that often happens when starchy vegetables are puréed in a processor, blender or in a mixer. I love my food mill for cooked vegetables and making purées, and don't forget to scrape the bottom of the disk when you're done!
Serve this soup with a sprinkling of snipped chives on top and, for me, a little hot sauce, too. This Potato Leek Soup is so good on a cold winter day ~ and so easy. Try it, you'll like it. Promise. Best ~ Kelly🍴🐦
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Potato Leek Soup
- 2 tablespoon unsalted butter
- 2 large leeks, white and pale green parts, thoroughly rinsed, roughly chopped
- 1 quart (4 cups) homemade chicken stock or use low-sodium, good tasting, store-bought
- 2 russet potatoes, peeled, cut into quarters ~ about ¾ - 1 pound
- 1 bay leaf
- Kosher salt and freshly cracked pepper
- 4 tablespoon heavy cream
- Snipped chives, for serving
- Optional: hot sauce, for serving
- Melt butter in large pot or Dutch oven over medium heat. Add leeks and cook over low heat, stirring frequently, until softened but not browned, about 10 to 12 minutes.
- Add chicken stock, potatoes and bay leaf to pot. Season lightly with salt and pepper. Bring to a boil, cover, turn down heat and simmer until potatoes are very tender, about another 15 minutes.
- Remove potatoes to bowl and set aside. Discard bay leaf and transfer soup mixture to blender (or food processor, in batches) and carefully blend until mixture is completely smooth. Return soup mixture to clean soup pot.
- Run potatoes through food mill directly into the pot of soup (or into a bowl and then transfer to soup pot) and combine well. Over medium heat, whisk in heavy cream and bring soup to a simmer, whisking frequently. Taste for salt and pepper and serve, sprinkled with snipped chives and hot sauce.
*Inspired by and adapted from Julia Child and Serious Eats
James (Jim) Tucker
Friday 11th of February 2022
Excellent, I add a few extras
Tuesday 4th of February 2020
Great Recipe, made some modifications for our main course soup. Followed your ideas to cook and clean leeks, cut potatoes into 1/4 dice and cooked for about 10 minutes separately. When I put leeks into food processor, I reserved about 1/2 cup of the potatoes. We added one Boars Head polish sausage (no nitrites, no nitrates). Cooked sausage separately in water to help reduce fat, then sliced into 1/4 dice when cool enough to handle. All added to soup pot and cooked until it was desired thickness. The leek potato soup with rolls and side salad is a full meal for a cold evening, yes it does get cool, even in San Diego.
Friday 28th of February 2020
Friday 15th of November 2019
Can you use an immersion blender and get similar results?
Friday 29th of November 2019
You could try, just don't overdo do it and you should get a similar result.
Sunday 3rd of November 2019
So simple, so delicious; definitely making again! MMm suggestion of nutmeg sounds interesting too. Thank you
Saturday 9th of November 2019
I love this soup, thanks for letting me know you did, too!
Wednesday 26th of June 2019
Made this yesterday, loved it, so yummy.