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+ servings

Potato & Leek Soup (cold or warm)

I think this is a good old standard the origins are of course peasant and it is simplicity itself. Super inexpensive you can serve 8 people for pennies, which you cannot say about many recipes any more.
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Prep Time 15 mins
Total Time 15 mins
Course Soup Course
Cuisine Soup Recipes
Servings 3 liters, approx


  • ½ kilo potatoes washed, pealed and sliced
  • ½ kilo leeks washed and coursely sliced
  • 2 liters water
  • 1 tbsp salt
  • ½ tsp white pepper
  • ½ tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1 dl heavy cream


  • Wash, peel and slice the potatoes and place in a large pot. Wash to remove any sand and dirt from the leeks and then slice them up coarsely as well and add to the pot. Add the salt and the water and bring up to a simmer and let cook for 40 minutes. Remove from the heat and let stand with the lid on for about an hour so that it has a chance to cool down a bit.
  • You can make this as difficult or as easy as you like, I use a hand held mixer (mixstavel) to puree the soup right in the pot to save time and cleaning up. You can also pass the solid contents of the pot through a food mill which gives a more velvety texture, or put it into the bowl of a food processor.
  • In any case return the contents to the pot and add the nutmeg, white pepper, cream and taste for salt. Remember that cold soups usually require a bit more salt than hot soups.
  • Serve chilled or hot, garnish with finely sliced chives or the tops of fresh onions or spring onions also very finely sliced. You can see more suggestions below.
  • If you find the soup too thick you can of course thin it with a bit of water.


"Cold soups" is a weird term. They should almost never be served cold, they are served chilled so remember to take it from the refrigerator about 20 minutes on a hot day before you want to serve it.
Garnishes for this soup can and should be rather simple, chopped chives or thinly sliced scallion. Maybe a spoonful of finely chopped egg and parsley. But being American why not crispy chopped bacon or small cubes of ham in the warm version.
This is a long lost soup and a bit dated I have to admit. But it has most of the things one really wants from a summer recipe. It is easy, simple and inexpensive. Has very few ingredients to worry about and takes in totality about 20 minutes to make, 10 in the beginning and 10 in the end. The rest is just waiting to enjoy it.
This is also not Vichyssoise which is an American invention, a bastardization of French Leek & Potato soup which is made with water instead of chicken stock. It was after all a peasant dish with very modest origins originally. To make Vichyssoise use only the white part of the leek and replace the water for good chicken stock which produces a slightly deeper flavor.
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!