Photos by Claire Zheng
Our summertime weather has been a bit erratic – so hot it feels like an oven, broken with March-like spells of rainy afternoons. Let’s face it: it’s getting a tad tiresome. But with autumn just around the corner, we have plenty to look forward to, from cuddling under the sheets with hot cups of cocoa to glorious, hearty soups. And of the hearty soups, leek and potato is one of the most soothing and familiar.
Traditionally considered an Irish comfort food, leeks must have been cheap and plentiful at some point in Britain’s history, as they are often paired with potatoes to create warm, robust meals. The Scottish put them into cock-a-leekie (chicken and leek) or tattie-and-leekie (potato and leek) soup; the Welsh regard leeks so highly that they have become a national symbol and, on the feast day of their patron saint, St. David, serve up the leek-based cawl Cymreig (Welsh soup).
Don’t let rising temperatures keep you from enjoying this lush and lovely soup; it’s nice to have options when the darned weather can’t make up its mind. Slainte!
Ingredients (makes four servings):
1 tbsp vegetable oil
1 onion, sliced
225g potatoes, cubed
2 medium leeks, sliced
1.2 liters vegetable stock
150ml double cream or creme fraiche
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1）Heat the oil in a large pan and add the onions, potatoes and leeks. Cook for three to four minutes until they start to soften.
2）Add the vegetable stock and bring to the boil. Season well and simmer until the vegetables are tender.
3）Whizz with a blender until smooth.
4）Reheat in a clean pan and stir in the cream or creme fraiche till combined. Heat through and serve.
// This recipe is courtesy of Chef Steffen Schnetzke from G Restaurant at Grand Hyatt Guangzhou, 12 Zhujiang Xi Lu, Zhujiang Xincheng, Tianhe District 天河区珠江新城珠江西路12号 (8396 1234)