Potato Leek Soup

1 pound leeks, cleaned and dark green sections removed, approximately 4 to 5 medium
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
Heavy pinch kosher salt, plus additional for seasoning
14 ounces, approximately 3 small, Yukon gold potatoes, peeled and diced small
1 quart vegetable broth
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup buttermilk
1/2 teaspoon white pepper
1 tablespoon snipped chives
1/3 cup pomegranate seeds
4 oz cooked pancetta until crisp


Chop the leeks into small pieces.

In a 6-quart saucepan over medium heat, melt the butter. Add the leeks and a heavy pinch of salt and sweat for 5 minutes. Decrease the heat to medium-low and cook until the leeks are tender, approximately 25 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Add the potatoes and the vegetable broth, increase the heat to medium-high, and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low, cover, and gently simmer until the potatoes are soft, approximately 45 minutes.

Turn off the heat and puree the mixture with an immersion blender until smooth. I didn't have an immersion blender, so I instead transferred the mixture to a blended. If you don't have an immersion blender or blender, you could use a hand mixer to help smooth out the soup. It will leave it a little chunkier.

If serving all the soup right away, stir in the heavy cream, buttermilk, and white pepper. Taste and adjust seasoning as necessary. Sprinkle with pancetta, pomegranate seeds, and chives. If saving the soup for later, refrigerate the potato and leek mixture and when ready to serve, warm it up again. Then add the heavy cream, buttermilk, and white pepper to the warmed mixture to prevent the buttermilk and cream from curdling. Finish by topping with pancetta, pomegranate seeds, and chives.

Makes 6 servings, enjoy!

Source: Alton Brown on The Food Network

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