Most of this week we saw summer temperatures, even at night. I was hot outside in shorts and a tee. But the weekend saw cooler fall temperatures and I decided it was time for some fall soup :). With my plethora of leeks and the large amount of potatoes we bought from the farmers market at couple weekends ago, I thought I would try to make leek and potato soup, inspired by a fellow blogger over at Stoney Acres who also posted a recipe for this earlier this week.
The main ingredients of the soup where obviously the potato and the leek. But what made it different then others is the crunchy bacon and potato skin topping. As I was peeling the potatoes I decided I didn't just want to compost and waste these delicious bits of skin, so I thought I would try frying them to make crispy potato skin bits. (the chunks of potato I didn't use in this recipe). The potatoes for the soup were sliced about 1.5cm thick so they would cook fast. I boiled them in about 2 cups of chicken stock and used the emersion blender to create a creamy soup base.
I sliced 4 strips of bacon into thin pieces and fried them in a fry pan. Trick to getting great crispy bacon bits that wont burn, start with a little water in the fry pan, just enough to almost cover the bacon. Cook the bacon on medium-high heat, as the bacon cooks the water boils away and then they fry in their own fat to crispen up at the very end (I saw this on an episode of Chef at Home with Michael Smith, he is one of my favourite TV chefs). After the bacon is done don't waste that great bacon grease, throw the potato skins in there and crispen them up (watch them carefully as it will happen fast). Then chop up a the leeks into about 1-2 cm slices and a couple cloves of garlic and fry that together in the left over bacon grease.
Combine the leek and garlic with the potato soup and top with crispy bacon and potato bits. Serve with thin garlic bread. (Note you could also puree the leeks with the potatoes for a smoother soup)