This soup is dead easy but it's delicious and beautiful served cold with crispy salted croutons.
50g unsalted butter
1 tbsp olive oil
1kg potatoes, peeled, cut into 1cm cubes
1 leek, cut in half, washed well, finely sliced
1 medium brown onion, peeled, finely chopped
5 cloves garlic, finely chopped
2 fresh bay leaves
1 litre fresh chicken stock* (make sure stock is gluten-free if required)
1/4 cup cream
sea salt and fresh ground white pepper
2 tbsp flat-leaf parsley, finely shredded, to garnish
Heat butter and oil in a large heavy-based pan. Add the potatoes, leek, onion, garlic and bay leaves and cook on a low heat, stirring frequently until the leeks have softened.
Add the stock and simmer, covered, for about 25 minutes or until potatoes are very tender. Remove the bay leaves and purée the soup until smooth. Return the soup to the saucepan and stir through the cream. Season to taste. Add more chicken stock if necessary to give the desired consistency.
Ladle into soup bowls, garnish with parsley and, if desired, some of the suggestions in Hot Tips (below). Serve with crusty bread.
• As well as garnishing with parsley you can also serve the soup with some crumbled blue cheese and crispy pancetta, as pictured.
• If you prefer, use some grated aged cheddar, a spoon of crème fraîche or pan-fried speck as garnishes.
SOMETHING TO DRINK
Something different but very classic, this beautifully crafted Sánchez Romate Don José Oloroso sherry ($42) has freshness and savouriness as well as a hint of walnut. Soft and elegant, it will be greatly appreciated with this starter.