Jason and I both work from home.
Most weekdays, we wouldn’t leave the house if we didn’t need to take Theo to daycare. I drop him off in the morning and Jason picks him up, and without fail, when Theo gets home, he immediately wants to go back outside. No sooner do we put him down past the front door does he start yelling “Go! Go!” and “Walk! Walk!”
It’s like he knows we have been sitting at home staring at our computers all day. He’s trying to make sure we get some exercise, some fresh air, clear our heads. And since we’re only a couple blocks from the park, there’s something in it for him too.
Most days, we race to the swings, stopping at least 12 times along the way to point out rocks and stray neighborhood balls and of course every truck on the road. But this week, with the temperature dropping quickly and the sun setting early, Theo just wanted to stroll around the block and hold our hands.
When we got home, the sky was almost dark, noses were runny, and hair was matted beneath our hats. What I’m trying to say is it was soup weather, which is exactly why I made this potato, leek, and fennel soup. It’s also because I had all the ingredients for this soup—stragglers from various CSA baskets of the past weeks—still in the crisper looking like they needed to be consumed.
And that’s a good thing, because despite their withering old age and minor imperfections, they tasted magnificent in this soup. After 30 minutes of simmering and a whizz with the immersion blender, you couldn’t see those flaws anymore. Instead the soup tasted silky, creamy, full of good things, but not heavy at all. The perfect end to a fall evening.
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 3 large leeks, white and light green parts sliced thin
- 1 fennel bulb, cored and sliced thin, fronds reserved for garnish
- 2 celery stalks, sliced thin
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 teaspoon Kosher salt
- 1 - 1¼ pounds russet potatoes, scrubbed and chopped into ½ inch pieces (optionally peeled)
- 3 - 3½ cups vegetable broth
- ½ cup heavy cream
- 2 pieces extra thick cut turkey bacon
- Freshly ground black pepper
- In a medium-sized heavy bottom pot, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add leeks, fennel, celery, garlic, and salt and cook until vegetables soften, about 5-7 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add in potatoes and give it a stir.
- Add in vegetable broth and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer soup for 25-30 minutes, until potatoes are tender.
- Let soup cool slightly, then puree using an immersion blender or food processor. Stir in heavy cream. If too thick, add a bit more broth. Adjust salt to taste.
- In a small saucepan, cook bacon until slightly crispy. Cut into ½ inch pieces and set aside.
- Ladle soup into bowls and garnish with bacon, fennel fronds, and freshly ground black pepper.