How many cream based soups have you eaten which are so thick and congealed you could leave your spoon on the surface without it falling through? Certainly enough that cream based soups are out of vogue and labeled as unhealthy.
Why not try making it the proper way? This recipe, adapted from my culinary school knowledge, for cream of leek soup is light enough to eat on a diet. You see, Cream soups are called such because of their consistency – not the added cream. Try leaving out the cream entirely and you will be surprised how naturally creamy the leeks make the soup. A good stock will make all the difference in this recipe, so reach into the back of your freezer and pull out that bag of frozen chicken stock you have been hoarding. Today is the day.
Cream of Leek Soup(serves 2)
In a medium saucepan melt butter over low heat. Add onions and garlic and cover with a lid to sweat. Toss occasionally. Cook for 5 minutes, or until onions begin to soften and then add leeks and a big pinch of salt. Continue to sweat with the leeks under a lid and tossing occasionally. Cook until leek softens, about 10 minutes.
Sprinkle the flour on top of the leeks and stir in to combine. Cook, stirring continuously for a few minutes, or until you can no longer spot the flour.
Add chicken stock until the leeks are covered, reserving any extra. If you need more liquid add water in place. Bring mixture to a simmer, uncovered and cook for 15 minutes. Add half or the parsley and let sit for 1 minute. The parsley will encourage a green colour in the soup.
Transfer to a blender. Make sure the top of the blender is vented, and turn the blender on low. Slowly increase the speed to high and blend until very well mixed, about 1 minute. If you want a very consistent and smooth soup, strain back into the pot, otherwise just transfer back to the pot and bring back to a light simmer.
Test the soup for consistency, you want it to be the consistency of heavy cream, if it is too thin add a bit of water or extra stock. If you want to use cream, this is when to do it. Put two tablespoons of heavy cream in the microwave until hot but not boiling and gently stir in. Season to taste with salt and freshly ground pepper. Serve hot, sprinkled with remaining parsley.