Heating up some soup and tucking in with a slice of crusty warm bread is the perfect antidote to the grey wintry weather outside. While soup is easily bought from the shop, homemade versions can often be healthier and more satisfying. One such classic which can easily be made at home is leek and potato soup.
Leek and potato soup is a staple dish, typically made with diced potatoes, leeks, chicken broth and heavy cream.
Traditionally leek soup is associated with Wales, but variants can also be found in Romania and France.
Whether your New Year’s resolution was to eat in more, to try and expand your cooking repertoire or you just want to enjoy homemade soup – leek and potato is an easy base to start with.
BBC Good Food has put together an easy recipe for leek and potato soup, so just follow the simple steps below.
Leek and Potato soup recipe
450g potatoes, peeled and cut into 1cm pieces
1 small onion, cut the same size as the potatoes
450g white parts of leeks, sliced (save the green tops for another soup or stock)
850ml-1.2litres/1.5-2pts light chicken or vegetable stock
142ml carton whipping cream
125ml full-fat milk
the white part of 1 leek
a small knob of butter
finely chopped chives
First, melt 50g butter in a heavy saucepan until it foams.
When the butter foams, add 450g potatoes, cut into one-centimetre cubes, one small onion, cut the same as the potatoes, and 450g white parts of leeks, sliced.
Toss them in the butter until they are well coated.
Then, season well with salt and freshly ground pepper and toss again.
Put a disc of greaseproof paper on top of the vegetables to keep in the steam, and cover the pan with its lid.
Cook over a gentle heat for 10 minutes, or until the vegetables are soft but not coloured.
Uncover the pan and discard the paper. Pour in 850ml of the light chicken or vegetable stock and bring to the boil.
Then simmer until the vegetables are just cooked – about five minutes.
Do not overcook or the soup will lose its fresh flavour.
Purée in a blender until silky smooth, in batches if necessary, then taste and adjust the seasoning.
Return the soup to a clean pan and stir in three-quarters of a 142ml carton of whipping cream and 125ml full-fat milk.
To finish the soup, finely shred the white part of one leek and gently cook it in a small knob of hot butter for a few mins until it is softened but not coloured.
Reheat the soup to a gentle simmer (add some extra stock at this point if the soup is too thick for your liking), then pour into warmed bowls.
Drizzle the remaining cream over each serving, top with a little pile of buttered leeks and a scattering of chives and black pepper and serve at once.
You can also make this soup without dairy, just swap the milk for any unsweetened non-dairy milk.
Use olive oil or vegan butter instead of dairy butter, and use a plant-based cream to pour over at the end.