Comfort Food for a Rainy Day – Smooth Leek and Potato Soup

Easy Leek and Potato Soup Recipe

IMG_0060After an especially wet and muddy walk this weekend at Polesden Lacey I was in dire need of something warm and comforting to eat. Thankfully the cafe in the outside courtyard of the National Trust house was cosy and warm and their leek and potato soup proved perfect sustenance after our endeavours.

I had forgotten how delicious this classic recipe is, and this recipe is the best; very easy and no frills or added ingredients.

Another frugal student recipe winner.

I whizzed up a a couple of large of leeks and two medium potatoes and was able to use up some chicken stock. I had run out of butter so instead I sweated the leeks in olive oil, added the peeled potatoes and liquidised into the perfect creamy soup. Nigel Slater has a very interesting take on this in his book The Kitchen Diaries. He adds some leftover Parmesan rinds while the leeks and potatoes are simmering to give a cheesy, velvety version. He then removes the rinds before  the leeks and potatoes with the stock, scraping in any cheese you can get from the rind. He suggests finishing off with a handful of chopped parsley and topping with some grated Parmesan. So next time you have any leftover rind from a hunk of Parmesan, don’t throw it away, but keep until you are in the mood for soup. To complete the wholesome approach, I love to serve soup with tasty cheese scones<

NOTE: The trick to achieving a lovely smooth texture is to simmer slowly for about 40 minutes.

To serve 4

This recipe is straightforward, no-nonsense and with just four ingredients very easy to make.

  • 2 large leeks
  • 2 large potatoes, peeled and cut into dice
  • 30g butter or 3Tbs olive oil
  • 1 litre chicken stock
  • fresh ground black pepper


  1. Trim the leeks by removing the tip and the dark leaves at the top.
  2. Slice into rings and wash throughly in cold running water. Make sure all the layers are separated so there is no grit lurking in between.
  3. Heat the butter or oil in a heavy based pan and add the leeks. Allow to soften and stir for 8-10 minutes or so. Add the potatoes and continue to stir for another 4-5 minutes.
  4. Add the chicken stock, cover the pan with a lid and allow to simmer gently for 40 minutes, checking from time to time to make sure it is not sticking. See Note below.
  5. Remove from the heat, season with salt and a good twist of black pepper. Puree by blitzing in a blender and serve.

Note: I usually cook this in a medium sized lidded casserole and put in a low oven – about 130C- to cook. This avoids the possibility of the soup catching on the bottom which can happen if you don’t concentrate when cooking on a hob. Likewise it can be cooked in a slow cooker.

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