For the first day of Fall this year, I made a vegetarian creamy cheddar leek soup. I’ll let you in on a little secret about leeks – did you know you can buy them sliced, cleaned and frozen in a bag a trader joe’s? So awesome. Now, I will pretty much always have the ingredients for a quick and easy soup on hand. If you don’t buy them pre-chopped, the easiest way to clean a leek is to cut off the root end, slice it length wish and the cut in to semi-circles and then put the slices in a colander and rinse. It is much easier to wash a cut leek than a whole one.
Creamy Cheddar Leek Soup
1 pound leeks
2 cloves garlic
2 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons flour
2 cups chicken stock
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground mustard
1/4 teaspoon white pepper
1 cup milk
3 ounces cheddar
optional: parsley for garnish
- In a heavy bottomed soup pot, melt butter. Add leeks and garlic and saute over medium heat until leeks are translucent. About 10 – 15 minutes.
- Sprinkle flour over the cooked leeks, stirring to combine, and let cook for 5 minutes.
- Slowly add chicken stock to the pan, about a half cup at a time, whisking completely after each addition to avoid lumps.
- After all of the chicken stock is combined, add seasonings and raise heat to bring to a boil and reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes.
- Whisk in milk, bring back to temperature.
- Slowly add cheese one handful at a time, whisking to avoid clumps.
- Taste and adjust seasonings. Depending on your cheese, more salt may be needed.
- Now you have two options – serve as is or blend. I prefer blended vegetable soups but that is a personal preference. I also hate seeds and nuts in my bread so make of that what you will.
- If blending, use an immersion blender and blend until smooth. Or use a food processor or blender and work in batches.
- Ladle in to bowls, garnish if desired, and enjoy!