Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Leek and Sweet Potato Soup

This recipe was included in our first winter CSA newsletter. It is actually a great combination (I was happy not to be including any type of squash in this soup, to be honest). I made a couple of adjustments, just to bring down the calories a little bit - butter and cream are great and everything, but maybe not for a soup I wanted to enjoy several weeknights in a row! I love soups like this that get blended because prep is so easy - you don't have to worry about your knife skills, just chop everything up and throw it in the pot!

2 Tbs olive oil (original recipe calls for butter)
2 leeks
1 medium onion
1 Tbs curry powder
2 medium sweet potatoes
1 can coconut milk (I used 'lite', use full strength if you prefer)
~2 cups chicken stock*
2 Tbs hot sauce (your choice, I used sriracha)
1/2 cup cilantro
heavy cream or milk
fresh lime juice

Heat olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Wash leeks thoroughly and slice into thin rounds. Add the leeks and roughly diced onion to the pot and season with salt and pepper. While the leeks and onions are sweating, roughly dice your sweet potatoes. I didn't peel mine - you can if you really want, but you don't have to, since this will all be cooked down and then blended. Once the onions and leeks are translucent, add the sweet potatoes and curry powder and stir to combine. Then add your coconut milk and chicken stock. *The reason that I say about 2 cups above, is that you can just rinse out the coconut milk can with the chicken stock and add that to the pot. To make this veggie, just substitute vegetable stock, or water and vegetable stock cubes as called for in the original recipe. Stir to combine and bring to a simmer. Add chopped cilantro and hot sauce (I used the full 2 tablespoons, be sure to moderate this if you don't like things too spicy) and cook until the sweet potatoes are soft.

Using either an immersion blender or regular blender, blend until smooth. This is where the newsletter instructions got a little vague. It says to blend the soup base with equal quantities of fresh cream and water and that the final texture should be that of runny cream. It doesn't tell us how much water and cream should be used - I ended up using about 3/4 of a cup of milk. The reason I know that was fine is because it tasted GOOD, which should be one of your indications that you are doing something right.

To serve, squeeze fresh lime juice into the bottom of a bowl (I used a half a lime for one serving) and carefully pour soup over the juice. Do not stir. The lime juice is a kick in the pants and I thoroughly enjoyed it! It literally made my mouth water as I was eating it. I can see adding some shredded chicken to this upon serving to up your protein intake, or even topping with additional roasted vegetables or brown rice. Hope you use your in season produce to make this, it was very easy and unexpected!

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