Learning to Cook · Miss Mary · Recipes

St. Patrick’s Week – Potato Leek Soup (Bacon) from Irish American Mom

2016 St. PatrickThere are potato soups, then there are potato soups.  I’ve tasted all kinds.  There’s the Chili’s baked potato soup that is extremely thick, then there are the really brothy ones similar to Zoupa Toscana that you may have tried at Olive Garden.  And there’s the Williams-Somoma Cheddar-Ale Soup that was ever popular at the Annual Belanger Irish Fest this past weekend AND it was gluten free.  Lastly, there are the soups mom made that make you yearn for homemade soup.

In researching traditional Irish cooking, I ran across Mairead’s Irish American Mom.  (FYI, to pronounce her name, it rhymes with parade and it’s Irish for Margaret.)  Her site is really about Irish American Heritage with great recipes added to impart her memories of childhood home cooking.  (You have to see her Cooked Cabbage recipe incredibly clever.)

2016 St pats irish soup 4Her Potato Leek soup inspired me to make one with bacon and red potatoes.  I’ve adapted our likes to her original recipe.  My husband ate two bowls of it.  It’s deliciously filling.

I encourage you to visit Mairead’s site Irish American Mom.

2016 St pats irish soupPrinted version:  2016 Bacon Potato Leek Soup

Bacon Potato Leak Soup

  • 4 thick cut pieces of bacon, cut into ½” strips
  • 2 large leeks, cleaned and thinly sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 medium red potatoes, washed and diced with skins on
  • 1/2 large sweet onion
  • 2 Tablespoons butter
  • 2 fresh Thyme sprigs
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 32 oz box vegetable stock
  • 1/2 cup half and half
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon white pepper

Directions

In a Dutch Oven, cook the bacon till crispy.  If it sticks too much to the bottom of your Dutch Oven, add a very small amount of Canola Oil.

2016 St Pats irish soup 2Add the leeks, garlic, potatoes and onions, and butter stirring to coat them. Turn the heat to low. Cook for 10 minutes, stir to prevent burning.

Add about ½ cup of the vegetable stock and allow the veggies and bacon to cook till soft.  Add the remaining stock, bay leaves, thyme sprigs, salt and pepper.

2016 St pats irish soup 3Simmer for 20 minutes until vegetables are tender.  Remove the bay leaves and thyme sprigs. Blend the soup until smooth with an immersion blender, or ladle in small batches using a food processor, or blender, or Nutri bullet (me).  Pour back into the Dutch Oven.

Add the half and half and stir into the soup.   Serve with some of the bacon, or sliced scallions, or Irish shredded cheddar, or croutons – you pick.

When cool, store in the Cassandra’s Kitchen Clear Plastic containers.  To re-heat, just add a little water to thin it out because potato soup has a tendency to thicken up.

NOTE: to prevent the redness of the soup, you can peel your potatoes and use chicken broth instead of vegetable stock.

 

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