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Rustic (Sweet) Potato and Leek Soup

It seems the theme for this weekend is ‘food‘. After my earlier Tesco-related post I’ve decided to give a quick hashed-up recipe for my rustic sweet potato and leek soup. I made this earlier today and it tasted great – a welcome lunch when we’re having temperatures hovering around the 0-5°C mark. Plus, who better to make leek soup than a Welshman, right? It is our national symbol, after all!

Ingredients (per person) (Photo 1)

  • One large leek
  • One small (or 1/2 large) onion
  • One small sweet potato (can use normal potatoes, obviously)
  • One cup (250ml – just under half a pint) vegetable stock
  • Olive Oil
  • Salt and pepper (and spice if required) for seasoning

Prepare the leek. Remove the outermost layer and cut off the majority of the green leaves, leaving just a hint of green on the main leek body. Retain the leaves for the stock and wash them thoroughly along with the main leek body.
Slice the leek. (Photo 2)

Slice the onion. (Photo 3)

Fry the onion and leek on a low heat along with a tablespoon or two of Olive Oil, a pinch of salt and a lot of pepper. Do not let any of it burn as it will totally destroy the flavour. (Photo 4)

Dice the sweet potato into small pieces and boil for 10 minutes on a medium-high heat. Don’t worry about it going soft and mushy; this is fine. In fact, it’s desired… soft, but still retaining its shape. As a guide, I used half the potato you can see in the first photo. (Photo 5)

Prepare your vegetable stock. (Photo 6)

After 10 minutes or so your leek and onion should be soft and the sweet potato should be boiled well. Drain the sweet potato and add to the leek and onion. Stir well, adding more seasoning if required (I usually add a bit of extra pepper).

Add the stock to the pan containing the onion, leek and sweet potato, and stir. You may optionally add the retained leek leaves to add flavour, but do not stir them in. (Photo 7)

Cover and simmer for 20 minutes on a low heat.

Enjoy, with bread (some people add an optional spice/herb or add some extra pepper before eating. I had some chilli ready but decided against it). (Photo 8)


  1. Posted January 21, 2007 at 00:54 | Permalink

    I love potato leek soup. I make an Irish version that has some cream and dill, but is pretty much the same otherwise. So much flavor and so little work.

    Oh, and if you want to simplify it even further, you can always cook the potato in the stock. Just dice the potato small, fry the leeks and onions a bit, then add the stock and potato and herbs and just let it simmer until everything is cooked.

    You can also puree half of the final soup if you like it thicker.

    BTW, nice photos!

  2. Posted January 21, 2007 at 01:23 | Permalink

    I’ve never had it with cream before but have heard it recommended a lot. It makes such a difference with most other soups, so will have to try it when I have some cream in. I also bought an extra leek in order to have the same tomorrow so will try the simplified method then.

    As for puréeing, I haven’t had a blender for about four months so I’m down on my luck there. I usually purée more than half of a soup as I love them thick… especially carrot and coriander!