With little more than three ingredients, the success to this simple soup depends upon cooking the leeks to the point where they are meltingly tender and sweet. For added flavour, add a piece of chorizo or some soaked salt cod (bacalau) when frying the leeks. Leave in while simmering the soup but remove before pureeing.
- 2 leeks
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 125 ml (½ cup) cream
- grated parmesan or pecorino cheese and croutons, to serve
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.
Soaking time: 1 hour
Wash the leeks, then slice twice lengthways towards the bulb end, without cutting right through. Place in a large bowl of water and allow to soak. The leeks should open out a little like flowers. This will assist in removing dirt embedded inside the leek.
After about an hour, rinse leeks thoroughly in fresh water and chop roughly.
Heat olive oil in a heavy-bottomed saucepan and fry the chopped leeks gently until soft and transparent. Cover with water and simmer for a further ten minutes, covered.
Add salt to taste.
Blend the leeks to a thick puree.
Return to the saucepan and add the cream. Reheat to serving temperature.
Garnish with parmesan or pecorino cheese and croutons and serve.