On the amazon.com review page of our book Cheater BBQ there’s a lonely, lousy one-star review. Our critic, named “Julia Child ‘Chef Extraordinaire,’” was disappointed that our methods were too simple. Good for her. She got the point of the book.
Anyone hoping for something complicated will be disappointed in our crock pot/aluminum foil/low temp oven approach to braising meats. Cheater BBQ is not rocket science, it’s just basic food science. Perhaps “Chef Julia” should have ordered a coffee table cookbook on molecular gastronomy, much closer to actual rocket science.
The Original Julia, the gal who deconstructed French cooking for the American home cook and kitchen, has helped us feel better about jumping in, trying, spilling, failing, succeeding, and learning. She inspired Cheater Chef R.B. to attempt his own take on Julia’s famed Potage Parmentier (Potato Leek Soup).
Talk about simplicity. The soup consists only of sautéed leeks and potatoes simmered in salted water. No branded ingredients, no tortured methods. After simmering, an immersion blender smoothes it out beautifully. Taking after his mother, R.B. says skip the cream; potato leek soup doesn’t need it. Next time, however, he’s adding watercress to make Potage Au Cresson for me.
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 3 large leeks, light green and white part thinly sliced
- 2 large baking potatoes, peeled and chopped
- About 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 2 to 3 quarts water
Melt the butter in a large soup pot.
Saute the leeks in the butter over medium heat until softened, about 5 -7 minutes.
Add the potatoes and water. Add 1 teaspoon of salt (adding more later, to taste).
Simmer about 45 minutes to an hour, partially covered.
Check the salt level before serving and adjust if necessary.
For a chunky soup mash with a potato masher. For a smooth soup, use an immersion blender and make it as smooth as you like. Makes 8 servings.