The thermometer is dropping, kids. Time to break out the scarves or maybe even some gloves. There’s an autumn snap in the air and here in Vancouver, the mountains got dusted with snow for the first time this weekend. Eeeee! I love fall.
I’m brimming with bloggy goodness this week. I spent a lot (too much?) time this past weekend sprucing the place up with some new “follow” and “share” options to make it easier to stay in touch and to share anything you find here that you would like to pass along to other friends. If you aren’t a subscriber yet, get updates by email or RSS and never miss a post or recipe, and feel free to connect through Facebook, Twitter or Pinterest. What a world we live in that we can be perfect strangers, yet still know so much about each other!
In addition to making it easier to stay in touch I also thought it was time for a pumpkin banner since Halloween is just around the corner, and then I couldn’t resist a new plum coloured background. Nothing quite like some redecorating!
Also, I have a little side project brewing. I won’t let it all out of the bag yet, but I will say this: it’s something Christmas-y and I can’t wait to share it with all of you in late November.
In the meantime, get cozy, hunker down and make some soup!
Rustic Potato Leek Soup
Pull out your biggest soup pot for this one, it makes enough for a crowd, plus leftovers, which freeze well in zip-top bags for up to 6 months.
2 lb Yukon gold potatoes, cubed, skins on
3 large leeks, chopped
3 cloves of garlic, minced
2 Tbsp olive oil
2 bay leaves
2 tsp dried dill
1 litre chicken (or vegetable) stock
1 litre milk
1 cup sour cream
salt and pepper to taste
pinch of smoked paprika
Wash and trim the leeks: cut off the root end and the coarsest dark green ends -discard. Cut the leeks length wise and rinse under cold running water to eliminate any sand, dirt or grit. Shake dry and chop crosswise into ¼” ribbons. Mince or grate the garlic, set aside with the leeks.
Heat the olive oil in a large, heavy bottomed pot, add the bay leaves, leeks and garlic. Cook over medium heat until the leeks are softened and fragrant. Do not allow them to darken, just stir and allow them to mellow and become soft. Add some water and reduce the heat if they begin to stick. Add the potatoes and top up with the stock. If the potatoes are not covered, add some water until they are. Simmer for 20 minutes until the potatoes are very soft and the liquid is slightly reduced.
With a potato masher press the cooked potato into the leeks and broth. This will create coarse, loose mashed potatoes. Add the milk and sour cream, continuing to mash the potatoes and smooth the soup. If the texture is too “rustic” for your liking, transfer 1/2 the soup to a blender and blitz it until smooth and return it to the pot. Likewise, you can use an immersion blender to whiz the soup to a creamier consistency.
Stir in the dried dill and season with salt and pepper as desired. Serve very hot with extra sour cream.