Sunday was a beautiful spring afternoon in the Bay Area, and I took the opportunity to bring out some of our patio furniture to do some outdoor reading. My book of choice was Vegan Diner by Julie Hasson, a recent birthday acquisition. I loved reading about all the different ingredients she recommends using to make your own balanced meals instead of stocking up on processed soy and gluten products from the grocery store. I was especially intrigued by her Nacho Cheese sauce – I can foresee a future post trying out that one!
The one recipe that caught my eye was for a potato and leek soup. I’ve made this type of soup before, but her recipe called for mushrooms as well. I’m not sure why I never thought of that myself – I love the combination of mushrooms and leeks, especially in risotto. Also, this recipe called for pureeing the soup after cooking up all the ingredients, which makes prep very easy – you can be carefree about how consistently you prep your veggies. I’m usually quite particular about prepping my ingredients – I think it might be the math geek in me wanting everything to be perfectly proportionate. A fellow foodie-friend found this link which pretty much sums up my feelings about food prep.
I took some liberties with her recipe, but most of this inspiration comes from Julie Hasson’s fabulous book, which reminds me of a quote on Isa Chandra Moskowitz’s twitter feed: “All great chefs beg, borrow and steal, but only the greatest ones give credit.”
- 3 leeks washed and rough chopped
- 2 stalks celery chopped
- 2 bay leaves
- 10 medium mushrooms (I used cremini)
- 2 peeled and chopped russet potatoes
- 1/4 cup quinoa
- Seasonings: white pepper, salt, green chilis
- Saute the leeks, celery and bay leaves until the leeks are softened.
- Add the mushrooms until they release their water.
- Add the potatoes and then add enough water to cover the ingredients.
- Add the quinoa and seasonings, bring to a boil and simmer until the potatoes are fully cooked.
- Turn off the heat, grab your immersion blender, and puree to whatever consistency you like best (I always prefer a few chunks).
This soup is hearty enough for a meal on its own and the quinoa gives you an added protein punch!