What I Made: Potato and Leek Soup. I found Alton Brown's recipe on the Food Network website.Why: Leeks are in season and a rainy day like today calls for hot soup.
What I Did: I skipped the buttermilk originally called for because I never know what to do with the rest (tried buttermilk pancakes once, but nothing can beat my parents' pancake recipe). Also, I didn't have any vegetable broth so I substituted chicken broth and some water.
5 leeks, cleaned and dark green sections removed
2 tbsp. bacon fat
1 tsp. salt
3 small potatoes, peeled and diced small
1 can chicken broth
2 cups water
1 cup heavy cream
1/2 teaspoon white pepper
Chop the leeks into small pieces.
In a 6-quart saucepan over medium heat, melt the bacon fat. Add the leeks and a heavy pinch of salt and sweat for 5 minutes. Decrease the heat to medium-low and cook until the leeks are tender, approximately 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Add the potatoes, chicken broth and water and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low, cover, and gently simmer until the potatoes are soft, approximately 25 minutes.
Turn off the heat and puree the mixture with an immersion blender until smooth. Stir in the heavy cream and white pepper. Taste and adjust seasoning if desired. Serves 4.
Review: Delicious and filling with a perfect smooth texture. The cream really makes it, well, creamy. Usually recipes for leeks call for a strict use of only the white part, but with the advent of immersion blenders, it doesn't matter anymore. Using some of the green lends a nice color. Maybe one day I'll try it with a lot of the green.