I get the pleasure of closing out the month of soups. I hope you’ve found some tasty treats to warm up your winter, and I hope you’ll like this one as well.
Before I get to the recipe, here are a few quick points:
- Leeks need to be washed as there is almost always dirt between the layers. The best way to make sure you get them clean is to chop them — lengthwise then crosswise — and separate the layers. Usually a good rinse in the colander does the trick, but if yours are particularly dirty, pop them in a large bowl of water and swish them a bit (the leeks float, the dirt sinks). Do this before you start cooking; it can take some time.
- The standard rule is to use only the white part as the green tops can be tough and fibrous. Being a veteran rule breaker, I thumb my nose at this and use the entire leek. The green tops cook down just fine for us. If you want the flavor but not the texture, you can leave the tops large and take them out before serving or chop and cook them in a net bag.
- This recipe makes a huge pot of soup, but it can easily be halved or quartered.
- 1 package of bacon
- 2 large onions
- 4 large leeks
- 32 oz chicken stock
- ½ T poultry seasoning
- ½ T parsley
- ½ T general seasoning mix
- 2 T salt
- 1 T white pepper
- 4 bay leaves
- 10 medium-small potatoes
- Water to cover
- 1 c half-and-half
- 2 c milk
Chop the bacon, toss in a large soup pot and start cooking on medium-ish heat. Chop the onions and add to pot when the bacon is about halfway done. Give the onions a good sweat, then add the leeks and sweat them as well. Add the stock and seasonings. Chop the potatoes and add to the mix. Add enough water to cover well and let cook on medium-low heat until the potatoes and leek tops are soft (approx. 45 minutes). Stir in the half and half and milk and leave on the heat until the soup comes back up to temperature.
More notes, just because I can:
- This soup pairs beautifully with dark bread and sharp cheddar cheese.
- If you like meaty soups, chicken goes well with leeks. Toss in fresh chicken while the potatoes are cooking, or add leftover/canned chicken when you add the dairy.
- It can easily be made vegan – drop the bacon and sweat the onions and leeks in oil, change the chicken stock for vegetable, and replace the milk and h&h with non-dairy milk substitutes.