Right now on the stove is simmering a pot of one of my all time favorite soups: potato leek with sorrel.
At left: a variety of potatoes from the farmers market.
The sorrel is fresh from the garden, the potatoes and leeks are from the farmers market this week. The only other ingredients are butter, water, milk and/or half and half, salt and pepper. And that is quite perfectly enough. You can add some thyme if you want -- it's delicious with or without. I like to use a variety of varieties of potatoes, because it looks more interesting but also because I think it makes for a more complex taste.
Here's how to make the soup:
- Melt 4 Tbs butter in a soup pot.
- Chop a bunch of leeks. The proportions are very flexible, so you can use 5, 6, 8, 10 leeks-- whatever you feel like! But do use only the white and light green parts.
- Saute the leeks in the butter with some salt and pepper.
- Chop a bunch of potatoes -- at least 6 or 8.
- After a few minutes, add potatoes to the leeks and butter. Add a little more salt and pepper.
- Add a little water to keep the potatoes from sticking to the bottom of the pot.
- Chop the sorrel, and after the potatoes have cooked for a few minutes, throw the sorrel into the pot.
- Cook while stirring for a few more minutes until the sorrel is wilted and everything looks good and juicy. If you want at this point, you can add some fresh or dried thyme.
- Add a couple/few of cups of water and bring to a boil.
- Simmer until potatoes are soft.
- Add about a cup of milk and throw in some half and half or cream too if you have some on hand and like a richer taste. Taste the soup and add salt and pepper to taste. But don't overdo it because the flavors of the potatoes, leeks, and sorrel are so good all by themselves!
- Serve hot with chunky bread and red wine. Go ahead and top with sour cream just to complete the dairy overload. Sprigs of fresh thyme make a nice fancy garnish.