Monday, May 6, 2013

Potato Soup with Dill

Note: I made this soup patterned after a recipe I found online, but have since been unable to locate that inspiration recipe. There's a lot of flexibility in this soup - to use leeks or onions, to add in celery or not, to puree or not, to finish with cream or not. Let your mood and your ingredients on hand guide you.

Serves: 2 (with leftovers)

Season: Summer, Fall, Winter, Spring

  • 1.5 pounds russet and/or Yukon gold potatoes, peeled and chopped
  • 1-2 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 large leek, rinsed well and chopped (use just the white portion, discard the green tough tops, and make sure to really clean the leek well while fanning out the layers to get the dirt/sand out from between the layers) OR substitute 1/2 large onion, chopped
  • 1 carrot, peeled and diced
  • 1 rib celery, peeled and diced (optional)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 T white wine, any variety
  • 2 T unsalted butter
  • 1 quart chicken stock (I use chicken base + water)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • copious amounts of fresh dill
  • milk or cream, to taste (optional)

Bring water to boil in a medium saucepot and boil the potatoes until tender.

While potatoes are cooking, warm 1-2 T of oil in a sauté pan large enough to fit the leek or onion, the carrot, and the celery (optional; improves flavor but if you don't have any on hand the soup will not suffer much). Add the leek or onion along with the carrot and celery and sprinkle with a pinch of salt. Sauté the vegetables until the leek or onion is nearly tender. Add in the garlic and sauté until the garlic is tender. Use the wine to deglaze the pan but make sure to let the alcohol cook off after you add it to the pan.

When potatoes are tender, drain and rinse. Return to the saucepot and add 2 T of butter, the leek mixture of vegetables. Add stock, bay leaf, and fresh dill sprigs to taste. Bring this to a boil and then turn heat to low and simmer for 10 minutes. Remove the bay leaf and then partially or completely puree the soup in a blender (or using a hand blender in the pot), depending on your preference for chunky or smooth soup. Add soup back to the pot and season with salt and pepper to taste. Optional: finish the soup with milk or cream to taste. Garnish with any additional remaining dill.

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