This is most definitely a family favourite in our house. As soon as there is a hint of coolness in the air, I start craving it. In fact, despite the fact that this week has been so hot, I still was inspired to bring this to my table last Sunday. Inspired by the beautiful looking leeks at the market. I was also inspired by Lovin’ Oven Bakery’s potato scallion bread and wanted some delicious grilled cheese to make this a perfect meal. Oh, and regular market goers might remember this soup at Savour September last year. Our event cook Ed Moch, also known as my husband, prepared this quickly and simply on site with minimum supplies.
If you have never made homemade soup before you will be pleasantly surprised at how amazingly easy it can be. It just takes a few simple fresh ingredients and the rest just falls into place.
1/2 lb of bacon from Top Market Meats
1 1/2 cups of chopped leeks (white and light green part only)
1 1/2 lbs of white or yukon gold potatoes, diced
5 to 6 cups of chicken stock
1 tbsp of chopped fresh thyme
1 cup of sour cream (full-fat)
Salt & Pepper to taste
Frank’s Red Hot sauce – to taste
chopped chives & green onions for garnish
1. In a large pot cook chopped bacon until crisp. I like to put a bit of water in the pan (just shy of covering the bacon) to help render the fat and prevent splattering. Cook the bacon like this on high until the water evaporates, then turn the heat to medium to finish cooking.
2. Remove the cooked bacon and reserve for later.
3. Place the chopped leeks in the bacon fat and cook until soft. This will take roughly 5 minutes.
4. Add half of the chicken stock to the pot and then the potatoes and thyme. I don’t peel the potatoes assuming they are new and have a thin skin but feel free to if you wish. Add the remaining chicken stock until the potatoes are covered. Simmer this until the potatoes are tender. Roughly 20 minutes
5. Remove the soup from the heat and puree. I like to use a hand blender, but a regular blender would work as well. If you prefer a chunkier soup you could blend it with a potato masher to break up the larger pieces.
6. Return the soup to medium heat and add the sour cream and salt, pepper and hot sauce to taste. The hot sauce should be used simply to round out the flavour but not create heat. This is why we use Frank’s.
7. Serve the soup in bowls garnished with the reserved bacon and chives or green onions. It is excellent served along side a grilled cheese made with Lovin’ Oven Bakery’s potato scallion bread and old cheddar cheese.
Visit the Aberfoyle Farmers Market in Aberfoyle, Ontario at 23 Brock Road South, on the rink surface of the Optimist Recreation Centre. Saturdays from the end of May until the end of October, 8am to 1pm.