It is bitter cold here in the midwest this week, we have temperatures that are below zero. Wind chill factor today is -15º Brrrrr!
Nothing warms your soul like a good bowl of hot soup. Potato Leek Soup with Bacon, one of my personal favorites is the perfect comfort food, warm, creamy, filling and so delicious. Play around with the garnishes – think of baked potatoes and all the great stuff you can put on them, You can throw some on the soup or make a little baked potato bar and let everyone make their own. We love to do that, everyone can get really creative and have some fun. I have included some ideas at the end of the recipe but please, get creative, we would love to hear what you come up with.
I made a pot of this yesterday and it did not last long. The kids piled in from school half frozen and said, “Oh wow, that smells amazing, MOM! What are you making, can we have some?” And that was that, the soup was gone. I will say that it was a good feeling to have something warm, nutritious and filling on the stove when the kids got home from school yesterday. I am not always home when they get back and it just fills my heart with joy to be able to do that for them once in a while.
Potato Leek Soup with Bacon
You can omit the bacon for a vegetarian version, replace the bacon fat with 3 TBS butter or oil.
You can add some cream or yogurt for a creamier version, just add 1/4 cup when the soup is done cooking and stir.
Add the diced bacon to a large dutch oven and cook on medium to low heat for about 10 minutes, stir occasionally. You want the bacon cooked but not too crispy. Drain excess bacon grease, reserve 3 tablespoons in dutch oven
If you like, you can reserve some of the cooked bacon for garnish, just take out a bit (1/4 cup) and save for later. You may have to cook it a tad longer in a small pan or microwave if you want a crispy bacon garnish.
Add the leeks to the bacon and cook for another 10 minutes
Add the diced potatoes to the leeks and bacon and cook for 10 minutes, stir frequently to be sure that the potatoes do not brown
Add the chicken stock on reduce heat to low. Cover and cook for 30 minutes stirring occasionally
You can use either an immersion blender, food processor or blender to blend the potato soup. If using the processor or blender, blend the soup in 1 cup batches and then return to the dutch oven
Stir soup together well and add the salt and pepper. Potatoes have a tendency to absorb salt, so you may have to add a little extra depending on your tastes
Serve warm and sprinkle some green onions or chives on top. You can add extra bacon crumbles or shredded cheddar cheese. If you like, add a dollop of sour cream for a baked potato flavor. The possibilities are endless.
This Potato Leek Soup with Bacon recipe is gluten free and dairy free.