Friday, November 4, 2016

Potato Leek Soup (aka Vichyssoise) – The Perfect Autumn in San Francisco Soup

This can be a strange time of year for weather in San Francisco. Our climate can suddenly swing from hot and humid, to cold and wet; which makes this potato leek soup a very valuable addition to the recipe repertoire. 

There is nothing better on a chilly, damp day than a steaming bowl of this; and conversely, few things are as delicious, and refreshing on a hot, sweaty day than a bowl of ice cold vichyssoise. As long as you cook the leeks long enough, you can’t go wrong either way.

Since the amounts of leeks and potatoes in yours may not be exactly the same as mine, be prepared to adjust the amount of stock in this recipe. It's always easier to add than reduce, so as long as your potatoes are covered, I’d play it by ear until it’s blended, and go from there. So, no matter what the weather, I hope you give this a try soon. Enjoy!

Ingredients for 6 portions:
1 1/2 pound leeks (about 4 or 5)
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 teaspoons kosher salt, plus more to taste
1 1/4 pound Yukon gold potatoes
3 to 4 cups chicken broth/vegetable stock, or as needed to adjust the thickness
1 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup crème fraiche, plus more to garnish (click here for recipe video)
pinch of cayenne pepper
sliced fresh chives for garnish


cookinmom said...

Awe leeks aren't ready in the garden yet! :( Will pin it to save for sure! So many leeks in the spring, so this would be perfect!

Unknown said...

I've always enjoyed your videos and your cooking method. Thank you for making this.

Btw- when you do find that vegetable bone, let us know so we can all make vegetable stock ... just kidding, chicken stock FTW (for the win)

Unknown said...

Did you say gorgeous? cause that is gorgeous!

Orenwolf said...

I've had a version of this that does the following:

1) Uses the leek tops, simmered in chicken stock for half an hour, to make a fortified leek "stock" that massively increases the leek-y-ness of this soup.
2) omits the cream, except for the creme fraiche garnish

IT was delicious this way! Regardless, do try this soup, it's wonderful either as Chef John has produced it, or with a leek stock! :)

Unknown said...

I must of screwed up somehow. My leeks I couldn't keep from carmelizing. Even at super low heat.

Alex in Shanghai said...

Sooooo delicious. I "ruined" it by adding a little browned sausage at the end. What an antidote to a cold, grey day!

ALCO holic said...

Could you float croutons on this too?

Unknown said...

This was absolutely delicious. Really putting the comfort in comfortfood!

However I once again encountered an odd problem while following one of your recipes that made use of an immersion blender. I blended for a few minutes and while it tourned soupy I couldn't get anything near the pillowy and smooth texture that seems to be in yours? The exact same thing happened when I did your butternut squash recipe a few weeks ago. While fantastically tasting I'd like to accomplish the same aesthetics as yours but something's going wrong.

Could it be my blender? Perhaps the blade isn't good enough? Or should I incorporate more stock-water to the recipe? Or just keep blending?

I hope you can give me a few tips!

Kind regards

Anonymous said...

@Bill Richards: Buy a thicker pot, man!

@Whatcha Cookin': Really? You really needed to ask that?
No Wonder CJ doesn't respond anymore. :P

CJ delete at your leisure. I really had to vent today!

Unknown said...

I think I will have to try this with your blue cheese croutons!

Thx! ;0)

inchrisin said...

I've never eaten leek before. I'm glad I tried this recipe. It has a wonderful flavor.

I cheated and made creme fraiche with powdered buttermilk and half-and-half. Yes. It worked in an oven with the light on. Lacto love 120F temps.

Thank you John!

rio ruben said...

whats panko and where can i find them

AQ said...

Thanks Chef

Poingat Opinion said...

Surely, you have heard of Celery Ribs, thus you now have vegetable bones and can add a few carrots, onions and other loose ends of vegetables to make a good vegetable stock.

Unknown said...

I have always loved the cheerful nature and high-definition visuals in all of your videos, Chef John. Maybe it's just me, but it's kind of saddening to hear you don't respond to comments anymore (which I thought was pretty awesome) and that your voice-overs don't sound as musical. I always thought your voice-overs were so uplifting and cheery that I never imagined anyone would say it was 'grating'; I hope you haven't been disheartened by those haters. Keep doing what you do, Chef John! The viewers who enjoy your recipe videos FAR outweigh those judging negative nothing-good-to-say-ers. Happy Holidays!

Anonymous said...

This was amazingly delicious. It was pretty darn good when I tasted the spoon after emptying it from the blender, but the creme really kicked it up to the level of incredible. My potatoes ended up taking longer than I thought, and I was worried I had lost too much liquid so I put in a splash of water. Turns out I didn't need to because of the heavy cream, but it still turned out wonderful regardless. I'm going to try it cold tonight.

Maria said...

Holy macaroni, I literally made this an hour ago and am planning to make it again... sooooo delicious.
Thanks for helping my leeks stay on fleek. I love your youtube channel!!

LK said...

Whenever I ask my Wife what she feels like for dinner, she says Potato Leek soup.

Great soup, Chef John.
Thank You.

Unknown said...

This was the best soup I have ever eaten. I decided that the best way to do Valentine's Day alone was to go ahead and make myself a fancy meal and enjoy it at a table for one in my candle-lit dining room. The menu was shrimp cocktail, this soup served hot, hanger steak with a mushroom-merlot reduction and garlic-sauteed kale. This was, by far, the absolute star of the evening.

Tracy said...

Made this for dinner tonight. Oh, my God, it's delicious!

Fortunately, I have enough ingredients over to make more for lunch tomorrow.