Holiday Recipe – Potato Leek Soup

Ready or not, the holidays are coming up quick! Over the next week and a half I’ll be posting some recipes for you as you plan your holiday menus. Hopefully you will be inspired and add one of these recipes to your repetoire!

My dad inspired me to make this soup after telling me about the Potato Leek Soup he was making last week. This soup would be a great way to start a meal, or it can even be a meal in itself. It’s pretty hearty and feels like comfort food, but it’s actually pretty healthy. With the richness of most holiday food, this is a great addition to balance out your menu.

Ingredients

2 leeks
1-2 shallots
1 yellow onion
5 cloves of garlic
vegan butter
3 Russet potatoes
1 box of vegetable broth (about 4 – 4 1/2 cups)
2 cups of cauliflower
1 cup of soy milk
ground black pepper
salt
thyme
rosemary
chives
vegan bacon

Directions

  • Chop the onions, shallots, press or mince the garlic, and slice the leeks. Use the white and light green parts of the leek, but not the darker green top part.
  • Saute the onions, shallots, garlic, and leeks in some vegan butter. My favorite is Earth Balance but Smart Balance also makes a vegan butter that’s not bad.
  • In a soup pot, bring the vegetable stock to a simmer. Peel and chop the potatoes into even size chunks. Add the potatoes, onions, shallots, garlic, and leeks to the simmering broth. Let it simmer until the potatoes are soft, about 20 minutes.
  • While the soup simmers, in a separate small pot steam the cauliflower until it’s soft.
  • Blend the cooked cauliflower with the soy milk until it’s smooth. This is what I’ve decided to call cauliflower cream. It basically helps thicken the soup up while leaving more potato chunks.
  • Once the potatoes are soft, ladle out about half of the veggies and some of the stock. Blend this in with the cauliflower cream until smooth and well combined.
  • Add the blended mixture back into the remaining soup. Stir well and add ground black pepper, salt, dried thyme, and dried rosemary to taste.
  • Pan fry the vegan bacon in some vegan butter. I use Smart Bacon by Lite Life. Break up or chop the vegan bacon strips into small chunks.
  • Chop a few chives. Ladle a serving of soup into a bowl and top with the chopped chives and vegan bacon. Serve with a roll or thick bread.

Vegetable Bean Soup

This past weekend the fall weather really settled in. It seemed like the perfect time to make a big pot of soup. This is one of my generic vegan soup recipes that changes a little bit each time I make it. It’s good for using up any leftover veggies from other meals or frozen veggies you might have in the freezer. Feel free to add your own favorites! It’s a very thick chunky soup, more like a stew. It’s really filling and stands on it’s own as a meal on a chilly day.

Ingredients

1 quart of vegetable stock
3 cups of water
2 – 3 potatoes depending on size
2 1/2 cups chopped celery
2 1/2 cups chopped onion
2 – 3 carrots
1 yellow squash or zucchini
1 leek
2 cups green beans
2 cups uncooked pasta
1 can of kidney beans (interesting blog post about kidney bean toxicity)
1 can of Great Northern beans
1 cup frozen peas
1 cup frozen corn
powdered garlic
dried oregano
black pepper
sea salt

Directions

  • Bring vegetable stock and 3 cups of water to a boil in a large soup pot. I recommend using a bigger one than I used in the photo, because mine was almost overflowing by the end!
  • Chop the potatoes, carrots, onion, and celery and add them to the boiling stock. You can saute the onions ahead of time if you want, but I didn’t. The potatoes take the longest to cook, so I try to get them in first.
  • While that boils, chop the yellow squash or zucchini, and the leek, and snap the green beans in half or thirds. Set these ingredients aside.
  • Add 2 cups of uncooked pasta to the boiling stock.
  • Drain and rinse the kidney beans and Great Northern beans and add to the pot.
  • Once the potatoes have started to soften a bit, add the leeks, squash, greens beans, peas, and corn. Reduce to a simmer.
  • Let it simmer until the potatoes and squash are fully cooked. The entire boil/simmer time from adding the potatoes until it’s finished is about 1 – 1.5 hours. I know it’s done when the potatoes are soft enough to easily stick a fork into and the squash is fully cooked.
  • Add garlic powder, dried oregano, ground black pepper, and ground sea salt to taste. I don’t have specific amounts because I add a little, then taste the broth, then add a little more until I like it.
  • Remove from the heat, let it cool a little bit, and enjoy!
One other modification you can try is adding some vegan sausage at the end. I used Field Roast, Grain Meat Co. Smoked Apple Sage Sausages. I heated one up separate from the soup, sliced it up, and added it to my bowl. It made a tasty addition!