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Roasted Potato Leek Soup

Although there's heavy cream in it, this is not a thick, creamy, white soup like most potato soups. It's also on the salty side, probably because of the amount of chicken base used.

12 ounces (3 sticks) butter, divided
1 pound fresh chopped leeks (washed thoroughly)
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1/8 teaspoon fresh chopped thyme
1 gallon chicken stock
1 1/3 pounds diced Idaho potatoes (1/8 inch dice)
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
5.3 ounces heavy cream
1.3 ounces chicken base
8 ounces medium scallions
1 ounce fresh chopped parsley
Salt and pepper to taste

Sachet
2 bay leaves
2 whole cloves
1/2 teaspoon cracked black pepper
3 ounces parsley scraps

Make the sachet: In a 4-by4-inch piece of cheesecloth, bundle the sachet ingredients and tie with 6 inches of butchers' string.

Saute fresh chopped leeks, minced garlic and thyme with four ounces of butter. Add chicken stock, sachet and potatoes. Reduce to three-quarters or until potatoes are cooked. The soup will become slightly thickened from the natural starch of the potatoes.

Add heavy cream, the remaining butter, chopped parsley and season accordingly with Worcestershire sauce, chicken base, salt and pepper. Remove sachet and discard.

Garnish top of soup with thinly sliced scallions.

Executive Chef Robert Vargo, Le Mont Restaurant & Molly's Irish Pub

Thursday, March 14, 2002

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