Tuesday, March 1, 2011
Cream Cheese, Potato, and Leek Soup
This recipe was inspired by a soup that I loved at a restaurant called Dixie's in St. Paul. Frequently Paul and I would go there for their Cream Cheese, Ham, and Leek Soup. I haven't found a recipe for it and have noticed through my internet sleuthing that it is no longer on the menu. However, I had potatoes and leeks and cream cheese in the refrigerator, so I thought I would try to make something close to it.
I made this awhile ago and am just getting around to posting it now. The vegetables were from the CSA box, so I think they were just asking to be in this soup! Also, I had a huge hunk of cream cheese from the warehouse club for pumpkin muffin frosting since that is Eleanor's birthday treat of choice. I knew that the clock was ticking on that cream cheese and that I had to find a way to use the remaining portion. This was an idea to use 8 more ounces of it. I really didn't want to make a cheesecake with the remaining portion because then I would eat a lot of that and have to work it off.
I sliced 3 leeks and sauteed them in 1 T. butter until just starting to soften. Then I added 6 chopped yukon gold potatoes and 2 carrots and added those to the pot (both of these items were from the CSA box as well). I added some of the parboiled turnips I had in my freezer from the CSA box. I wouldn't buy a turnip to throw in the soup, but it was a nice addition since I already had it and was looking for a use for it. I poured in some chicken broth (something I buy by the case at the warehouse club in the fall and winter) until the vegetables were nearly covered. I also added about 1/4 c white Two Buck Chuck that I had remaining in the refrigerator from some other recipe. I wouldn't have opened a bottle of wine for this recipe but did think it was a good way to use some that was remaining from some other cooking adventure. I simmered these until the potatoes were soft and turned off the heat until everything was cool.
After the soup was cool (and after we returned from violin), I used my immersion blender to cream the soup. Then, I stirred in about 8 oz of cream cheese. It was a bit bland so I added a couple grinds of pepper and 1/2-1 t. of dried thyme. I also used about 1 c skim milk since it was quite thick.
I served this with some of the artisan bread (see the link on the side bar of this blog). So, it was a whole dinner inspired by Twin Cities chefs. I guess they really know how to serve dinner on a cool fall night in Minnesota:)