Mary Berry's leek and potato soup

Mary Berry / 10 August 2015

A good homemade soup tastes so much better than a bought one, and this is quick and easy to make. It freezes well too. Serve with chunks of crusty bread for a homely lunch or supper, or swirl in a little extra cream for an elegant first course.

Preparation time

25 minutes

Cooking time

30 minutes

Serves

4



Ingredients

  • 3 leeks (about 250g/9oz)
  • 1 onion
  • 25g (scant 1oz) butter
  • 500g (1lb 2oz) potatoes
  • 1.2 litres (2 pints) hot chicken stock or vegetable stock*
  • Salt and freshly ground
  • Black pepper
  • Nutmeg
  • 150ml (5fl oz) single cream
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 2 tbsp chopped fresh parsley or snipped chives, to garnish

*I have recommended using a good home-made chicken stock here to give depth of flavour, but vegetable stock can be used instead. It will give a lighter taste.

Special equipment

  • A 5-litre (83⁄4-pint) pan
  • An electric blender

Method

Trim the leeks, leaving some green at the top to colour the soup. Cut in half lengthways, then cut across into 5mm (1⁄4in) slices. Rinse in a colander in plenty of cold running water. Drain well.

Peel the onion and cut it into slices about the same thickness as the leeks.

Place the pan on the hob over a medium heat and add the butter. Once the butter has melted and is foaming, add the chopped leeks and onion.

Stir to coat the vegetables in butter. Cover the pan and cook for about 10 minutes, or until soft but not brown,lifting the lid occasionally to stir.

While the leeks and onion are cooking, peel the potatoes and cut them into 5mm (1⁄4in) slices.

When the leeks and onion are ready, add the potato slices to the pan.

As soon as you have added the potatoes, pour in the hot stock, then add a little salt and pepper. Do not use too much salt because the stock may already contain some.

Add about 8 gratings of nutmeg, turn up the heat, and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat, cover, and simmer for about 10 minutes, or until the vegetables are soft.

Remove the pan from the heat and purée using an electric hand-held blender. Or, allow the soup to cool slightly and use a freestanding blender, puréeing in batches.

Bring the soup to a boil over a medium heat. Take the pan off the heat, add the cream and lemon juice, then stir and check the seasoning. Garnish with fresh herbs.

Nutritional information per serving

Calories: 293
Saturated fat: 8g
Unsaturated fat: 4g
Sodium: 349mg

Storage

You can make the soup and keep it in the fridge, covered, for up to 3 days, or frozen for up to 3 months.

Make vichyssoise

When leek and potato soup is served chilled, it is known as vichyssoise.

If making vichyssoise, leave to cool, then cover and chill for at least 4 hours. Chilling dulls the flavour, so check the seasoning before serving.

Mary Berry’s tips for leek and potato soup

Make sure you don’t have the heat too high, or the butter may burn.

If using a hand-held blender, keep the blades held below the level of the soup to prevent splashes, and blend for about 3 minutes.

Make sure all the ingredients are totally soft before you purée them. Any undercooked vegetables will make a lumpy soup.

Get more delicious recipe ideas by visiting out soups and stews recipe collection.

Mary Berry Cookery Course, published by DK, £17.99 (Flexi-bound edition)

Buy your copy of Mary Berry Cookery Course at a special discounted price from the Saga Bookshop.

The opinions expressed are those of the author and are not held by Saga unless specifically stated.

The material is for general information only and does not constitute investment, tax, legal, medical or other form of advice. You should not rely on this information to make (or refrain from making) any decisions. Always obtain independent, professional advice for your own particular situation.