Potato Soup (Hot) or Vichyssoise (Cold)
Potato Soup is one of the easiest and simplest soups you can make – requiring minimal ingredients and extremely versatile. It can be made with potatoes only, which is delicious. It is a wonderful basic soup you can build on by adding vegetables of choice – carrots, leeks, turnips, tomatoes, etc. In other words, the recipe can be easily adjusted to meet your personal taste. Start with the recipe below; and experiment – be creative.
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 6 white medium-sized potatoes, peeled and cut into small cubes
- 4 stalks celery, thinly sliced
- 1 large (or 2 medium) yellow or white onions, peeled and diced
- 1 teaspoon salt
- Freshly-ground pepper to taste
- 4-5 cups warm broth (chicken, beef, or vegetable)
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 3 cups whole milk
- 1 cup half-and-half (adjust the proportion of milk to cream to your taste)
- Salt and freshly-ground pepper to taste
- Place butter or oil in a large, heavy saucepan over medium heat.
- When oil is hot, add all the chopped vegetables.
- Sprinkle with salt and pepper, stir and cook for 2-3 minutes.
- Add the stock and cook until vegetables are very tender – about 20 minutes. (Use enough stock to cover the vegetables well.)
- Remove from heat and push the vegetables and liquid through a sieve. (Can also be pureed in a blender, but BE CAREFUL. Hot liquids tend to “explode” so work in very small batches on low power. It would be wise to let it cool a little before blending.)
- Return pureed mixture to pan and add milk/cream to soup until it reaches the desired consistency – then, proceed with the three steps below.
NOTE: If serving the soup hot, it is not necessary to puree. You may prefer the chunky-style potato soup. If so, simply add the milk/cream and proceed as directed in the following three steps.
- Heat the soup slowly over low heat – stirring frequently with a wooden spoon.
- Add butter, stir until melted – then, salt and pepper to taste.
- Soup will thicken as it stands, more milk can be added, if necessary.
Vichyssoise (Cold Soup): Make the soup as directed. Chill thoroughly, serve cold and garnish with minced chives.
Potato Soup with Leeks: Delete the onions and add 3 large leeks (well washed and chopped).
Potato Soup with Carrots: Add 3-4 large carrots, peeled and diced to the vegetable mix. Increase the cooking liquid and milk as needed.