Potato Leek Soup
The Assignment: Venture to a San Franciscan farmers market, purchase something I’ve never cooked before and make it happen.
“Early” Saturday morning, Rachel and I drove down California Street until we were at the Ferry Building on Embarcadero. It was my first time at the Ferry Building Farmers Market – and despite the rain, I loved it. I came across these sturdy-looking leeks and was easily convinced I could make a Potato Leek soup I’ve always wanted to try. The ladies working the stand helped me out considerably, as I had not a clue which part of the leek was used for cooking. The leeks were grown on the Catalan Family Farm in Hollister, California – about 100 miles from San Francisco. Their bi-weekly trek to the city made me confident they meant business. And an esculent one at that. All products from the farm are 100% certified organic.
I started looking at Food Network recipes and came across this Emeril Lagasse creation. It was just a few steps, nothing too crazy (until I got to the blender) and pancetta was among the ingredients. FoodNetwork.com made it easy for me with printable 4×6 recipe cards that I quickly found for good use.
This time around, I read all of the instructions before I started cooking and prepping. I didn’t want to be shocked with another 4 hour quiche disaster. I sliced the white/light green parts of 4 leeks, chopped 1 medium onion, measured 1 cup of pancetta and julienned 4 large russet potatoes. These were the main ingredients I worked with. The Emeril Lagasse via FoodNetwork.com recipe can be found here.
After combing the rest of the ingredients (including a lot of chicken and beef broth), I let the potatoes soften so the blending process would work in my favor. About 30 minutes later, I poured small amounts of the leek, onion, potato and stock mixture into the blender for a quick puree. Some batches I pureed more than others, leaving a nice chunky consistency in the soup. Turns out – the Potato Leek soup was better than I expected. And most importantly, it was quick and easy.
Who knew a rainy Saturday morning at the Farmers Market would leave me with a warm, starchy soup on a chilly Monday night? I certainly didn’t think so when I was wet and cold outside the Ferry Building. Would I go back to the Farmers Market and do this all over again? Absolutely.