Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Potato Leek Soup

So last week, Matt and I decided to have a fun date night and we drove about 25 minutes to ZipCity, an indoor trampoline and zipline park.  It.  Was.  Amazing.  And exhausting to say the least.  For $15 on Thursday nights, you can zip and jump as much as your little heart desires (or until your 2 hours run up)!

We were minding our own business and jumping away on one set of trampolines when a swarm of kids busted in with foam dodge balls in hand. After getting pelted one too many times and unsuccessfully making contact with them, we switched to a new trampoline.   It was there where I decided to try and show off my high school cheerleading skills (ahem... which was over 10 years ago) and ended up pulling something in my leg.  It obviously wasn't that bad because I still continued to jump and zip for another hour but boy was I sore the next few days!

After our unconventional date night, we decided we need to do more out-of-the-box things together.  We felt like we were kids again and with the stress-filled life that comes with adulthood, it was just what we needed.

PS- I also made soup.  A pretty classic one and it was simply delicious.  

Mmmm... bacon

When you slice the leeks in half, be sure to wash the layers out with water.  Nobody likes sand and grit in their soup!

Leeks lend a mild onion flavor

Chop up all of the veggies

Cook the bacon

Remove from pan and drain

Add the veggies right to the pan, bacon grease and all

I used Yukon gold potatoes but you can use any kind.

Add them to the veggies and cover with stock

Simmer for at least 30 minutes

I like to put half of the soup in the blender for a thicker consistency but still keep some chunks

Return blended soup to pan and add half & half and parsley.  Top with crumbled bacon.

Potato Leek Soup
5 slices of bacon, chopped
3 leeks, halved then thinly sliced
3 carrots, diced
3 ribs celery, diced
1/2 onion, diced
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
6-8 potatoes, peeled and diced
8 cups low sodium chicken stock
1 cup half & half
3 tablespoons flat leaf parsley, chopped

Preheat a stock pot over medium heat.  Chop vegetables and slice bacon into small pieces.  Add bacon to pan and cook until crispy.  Remove from pan and drain on a paper towel.  Leave the rest of the bacon fat in pan.

Add leeks, carrots, celery, onion, salt and pepper to pot.  Stir to coat with bacon fat and cook for about 5 minutes.  Add potatoes and stock.  Increase heat to medium high and bring mixture to a low boil.

 Reduce heat to medium low and simmer for 30 minutes or until potatoes are soft.  If you insert a paring knife into the center of a potato and it comes out with no resistance, then the potatoes are fully cooked.

Spoon about 2/3 of the soup into a blender (in batches) and blend.  I like to have a few chunks of vegetables in the soup.  Remember when you blend something hot in a blender, it expands so remove the plug on the top and cover with a dish towel so some steam can escape.

Return blended soup to the pan and add half & half and parsley.   Serve with crumbled bacon on top.

A few glimpses from ZipCity (taken with my iphone):

And this is when I most likely pulled my hamstring... at least I'm smiling though!

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