Leek & Potato Soup- leek agus prátaí anraith; is such a wonderful traditional Irish food and the perfect luncheon item to roll out in celebration of the beloved St. Patrick combining fresh leeks with potatoes, shallots, Traditional Irish Style boiling bacon, heavy cream and perfectly seasoned in a simple timeless manner.
We all know by now Mr. McCallum is a feisty Irishman and I do a countdown each year till St. Patrick’s day in celebration of his cultural roots. Culture has always been a big, big part on my families side, so I want him to be able to enjoy his traditional cuisine as much as our family enjoys or Italian and German cuisine. Last year I shared some of it on the blog and hope you had a chance to see it as well if your fond of Irish dishes….if not head over to the search menu and head to the Irish foods category.
There has been said to be an old Irish folklore that states St. Patrick was trying to console a dying woman. She told St. Patrick that in a vision she had seen a herb floating in the air, and that it had been revealed to her in her dreams that unless she ate the “floating herb” she would soon die. St. Patrick asked her what type of herb it was… She then told him that it looked like rushes. St. Patrick transformed some rushes into leeks; she consumed them and was cured as the old folklore goes…
Irish Leek & Potato Soup
- 1 tablespoons of unsalted butter
- 2 shallots diced
- 3 leeks, cleaned and sliced
- 1 pound Traditional Irish Style boiling bacon or cured pork loin, sliced 1×1
- 6 cups of vegetable stock (48 ounces)
- 2 cups water
- 2 and 1/2 pounds of russet potatoes diced & divided
- 4 fresh sprigs of thyme
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 cup heavy cream
- kosher salt, to taste
- white pepper, to taste
- Chives to garnish
- In a heated sauté pan (on medium heat) place 1 tablespoon of unsalted butter, sauté shallots and leeks till softened 3-4 minutes. Remove from heat and reserve till needed.
- Place Traditional Irish boiling bacon in a large pot and add enough water to cover. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. If bacon is salty, a white froth will form on the surface of the water, if that happens to drain water and repeat. Repeat this process until no froth forms on the surface of the water; drain off all water. Reserve the Irish boiling bacon till needed.
- Meanwhile, place 6 cups of vegetable stock and 2 cups of water in a large Dutch oven with 1/2 of the diced Russet potatoes, bring to a boil (place remaining half of diced potatoes in cold water and reserve). Simmer potatoes till soft and slightly breaking apart- about 24 minutes.
- Use an emulsifier to break the potatoes down the rest of the way or heavy-duty blender made of glass. The potato mixture should be a completely smooth soup like texture- if desired add extra vegetable stock or water to thin a little (do not over-thin)O
- Once done emulsifying the cooked potatoes, add the vegetable stock and water , drain the reserved vegetables of all cold water, add to dutch oven along with sautéed leeks, shallots, sliced Irish Boiling Bacon, 4 sprigs of thyme, 2 bay leaves, 1 cup of heavy cream and season with salt and pepper to taste. Simmer on low 20 minutes or till the second batch of potatoes have cooked to your taste.
- Ladle Irish Potato Soup into serving bowls and garnish with chives if desired.
© Heidy L. McCallum and The McCallum’s Shamrock Patch, 2014. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner are strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Heidy L. McCallum and The McCallum’s Shamrock Patch with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.