Serves 8 to 10
- 6 to 8 leeks
- 6 ounces spinach, pulsed in food processor or chopped coarsely
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1 Parmesan cheese rind (optional)
- 6 to 8 cups chicken or vegetable stock
- 2 cups cooked rice or pasta
- Freshly grated Edam, Gouda or Parmesan (optional)
- Lemon (optional)
1. Thinly slice all of the leeks and place in a large bowl filled with cold water. Stir and let stand for five minutes to allow any dirt to settle to the bottom.
2. Place butter and olive oil in large soup pot over low heat. Scoop out leeks from bowl of water and place in pot—any water clinging to the leeks is just fine. Season with a big pinch of salt. Cover pan and cook for ten minutes. Remove lid and continue cooking over low to medium-low heat for another 15 to 20 minutes, or until leeks are soft and have shrunk down considerably. The leeks shouldn’t begin to brown or get caramelized; they should be soft and giving up lots of liquid.
3. Add cheese rind (optional) and 6 cups of stock. Let simmer over low heat for 15 minutes. Taste and adjust for salt and pepper. Add remaining stock if necessary. (If your leeks are big and/or you’ve used 8 of them, you might need the extra 2 cups.)
4. At this point, you have a few options. If you’re making the soup for a crowd, you can add all of the spinach to the pot at once. (If not, you might want to keep the spinach separate—it quickly loses its bright green hue once it enters the broth.) If you’re making a small batch of soup, heat a small amount of broth in a separate pot with however much spinach you would like.
5. Add cooked rice or pasta to individual soup bowls. Ladle leek broth over the top.
6. Serve with grated cheese and a wedge of lemon on the side.
Source: adapted from Alexandra Stafford, Food52