Monday, September 20, 2010

Potato and Onion Soup

A perfect soup for a Sunday lunch is my husband's Potato Onion Soup. He used to make it as a bachelor, because the ingredients were relatively inexpensive, it was easy to make and tastes great. Of the winter soups — it's one of the most comforting and familiar. And thanks to the starch content, potatoes make a creamy soup all by themselves, so you don't even have to add milk or cream unless you want to! It's a heartwarming soup for in front of the fire, or if you're expecting guests, it can be 'tarted up' with a swirl of cream, some chopped chives and a dollop of sautéed leeks. It freezes well, so it can be made ahead of time, and simply reheated when needed. Of course, you can use leeks instead of onions for a Potato Leek Soup, but that would have been pretty fancy cooking for a bachelor!

Potato Onion Soup

4 tbsp butter
2 large onions or 4 large leeks, peeled and chopped
6 baking potatoes, peeled, chopped
8 cups chicken stock
1/2 cup whole milk or cream, as desired
fresh chives for garnish

Heat the butter in a large saucepan over medium-low heat. Add the onion. Cook, covered, stirring occasionally, for 20 minutes or until the onion is soft but not coloured.
Add potato and stock. Increase heat to high. Bring to the boil. Reduce heat to medium. Cook, partially covered, for 20-30 minutes or until potato is very soft. Uncover. Set aside to cool slightly.
Use a stick blender to blend until smooth. Alternatively, use a blender and purée until smooth transferring the soup to a clean saucepan, then taste and adjust the seasoning. Stir in the milk or cream as desired, heating the soup through over medium-low. 

For sautéed leeks: finely shred some white leek and gently cook it in hot butter for a few minutes until it's softened but not coloured.
To finish the soup, Reheat the soup to a gentle simmer and pour into warmed bowls. Garnish with a swirl of cream over each serving and some chopped chives, then top with small pile of buttered leeks if you're using them. A grinding of white pepper and you're good to go. Serve immediately.  
Makes 10 cups.