French Potato and Leek Soup (Julia Child Recipe) - Learn how easy it is to make this classic French soup!
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4.89 from 17 votes

French Potato and Leek Soup (Julia Child recipe)

This creamy, classic French soup is super simple to make. Adapted from a recipe by the great Julia Child from her iconic cookbook "Mastering the Art of French Cooking, Volume 1". Refer to the notes for differences to the original recipe.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time30 mins
Total Time40 mins
Course: Soup
Cuisine: French
Servings: 3 - 4
Calories: 218kcal
Author: Nagi | RecipeTin Eats

Ingredients

  • 2 tbsp / 30 g butter
  • 2 garlic cloves , minced
  • 3 leeks , white and pale green parts only sliced thinly (about 2 cups) (Note 1a)
  • 1 kg / 2lb potatoes , peeled a diced into 1"/2.5cm cubes (Note 1b)
  • 4 cups (1 litre / 1 qt) chicken broth/stock
  • 1/2 cup / 125 ml heavy cream (or milk)
  • Salt and pepper

To serve

  • 2 thick slices bread , torn into crouton size pieces
  • Olive oil spray
  • Salt
  • Chives , finely chopped
  • Extra cream , for garnish

Instructions

  • Melt butter in a pot over medium heat. Add garlic and leek and saut√© for 7 minutes until soft and sweet.
  • Add potatoes and broth, place the lid on and simmer for 25 minutes or until potato is very soft and almost falling apart.
  • Turn the stove off and puree with a stick blender until JUST smooth. Do not over puree (Note 3). Season to taste with salt and pepper, then stir through cream. Use water or milk to thin the soup if it is too thick for your taste.
  • Serve, drizzled with cream, sprinkled with chives and with croutons on the side.

Croutons

  • Preheat oven to 180C/350F. Spray or drizzle bread with olive oil (or melted butter). Bake for 5 minutes or until golden and crunchy. Season with salt.

Notes

1a. You can substitute with onions if you prefer.
1b. Potato types suitable: US - Yukon Gold, Russset Australia - Dirt brushed or the common washed potatoes you can get at any supermarket. Do not use red potatoes or new potatoes i.e. the ones that you use for potato salad because they are low in starch so will not break down as much when boiling to create a creamy soup.
2. I made changes to the original recipe to increase the flavour to my taste. The main difference is that I saute the leeks in butter and add garlic, and I use chicken broth rather than water. I also increased the amount of potatoes slightly to make it a bit thicker.
If you would like to try the original recipe, here it is (half quantity):
8oz / 250g potatoes, peeled and diced
8 oz / 250g leeks, white part only, sliced
4 cups / 1 quart / 1 litre water
2 to 3 tbsp cream or softened butter
1 tbsp minced chives or parsley
Directions: Simmer potatoes and leeks in water for 40 to 50 minutes until tender. Use a stick blender to puree, then stir through cream, season with salt and pepper and serve.
3. Please do not puree it for too long! Only puree it until it is just smooth. The reason is that excessive churning of potato can cause it to turn gluey. That's why I never make mashed potatoes in a food processor - it becomes sticky! It's also the reason why using a stick blender is better than using a blender for this recipe - you can control the pureeing better. If you only have a blender, I strongly urge you to mash the potato in the liquid with a potato masher first, then transfer to blender and pulse until just smooth. :)
4. Nutrition per serving assuming 4 servings.
Potato Leek Soup Nutrition

Nutrition

Serving: 393g | Calories: 218kcal