24 April 2009

Recipe: Sweet Potato Soup with Matchstick Fries and Frizzled Leeks

From Denny: We love our sweet potatoes here in Louisiana! From Canada.com comes yet another way to enjoy our beloved sweet potato in a gourmet soup. There is a recipe converter link listed after the posting area on this blog in case you are not familiar with the Canadian version of measurements.

Sweet Potato Soup with Matchstick Fries and Frizzled Leeks

This recipe comes from Chuck's Day Off show.

Makes 6 to 8 servings

The Sweet Potato Soup

3 large sweet potatoes, cut in chunks

3 leeks, roughly chopped

Pinch of sea salt and fresh ground black pepper

Nub of butter

6 cups (1.5 L) chicken stock

1 big knuckle of fresh ginger (about 1 tablespoon / 15 mL) peeled and grated)

2 cups water (500 mL)

Peel and quarter the sweet potatoes.

Wash leeks well and drain, remove any damaged outside peel, remove the hairy white tips from the end, and cut leeks into one-inch slices (leave one three-inch section aside to be fried later for the garnish).

Soften leeks in a large pot with a nub of butter, the salt and pepper. Do not brown.

Add six cups of stock or water

Add sweet potatoes and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium and boil until cooked through - just softer than fork tender. Using an immersion blender, purée the ingredients until they are thoroughly blended.

Add the grated ginger, and test for consistency. If too thick, add a bit more water. Taste for seasoning, adding more salt or pepper as needed. Place in a bowl and garnish with a mound of hot crispy matchstick potatoes and frizzled leeks.

Matchstick Fries and Frizzled Leeks

2 large Yukon Gold potatoes (or another medium-starch potato)

Canola oil for frying

A sprinkle of salt, pepper

3-inch (8-cm) piece of leek, julienned

A dusting of potato starch

Peel and cut potatoes into matchstick slices.

Rinse them under cold water in a strainer to remove excess starch. Let drain well. Pat dry. In a deep fryer set at 350 degrees F (180C), fry for three to five minutes submerged in canola oil until a nice, deep golden brown. Drain on a paper towel or absorbent cloth. Hit them with a sprinkle of salt and pepper right away.

Cut strips of leek into julienne slices similar to potato. In a small bowl, place two tablespoons of starch and lightly dust the leek pieces in it to help prevent burning. Fry the three-inch strips of leek in same oil until they are just golden - about one minute, to make "frizzled leeks."

Add to your bowl of matchstick fries. Mix them together. Garnish in a little mound on top of the soup.


Chuck's Day Off airs on the Food Network on Mondays at 7:30 p.m. For more information on Chuck Hughes's TV show and for more recipes, go to: www.foodtv.ca/chucksdayoff

For previous columns and recipes, go to www.montrealgazette.com/life and click on Food & Wine

© Copyright (c) Canwest News Service

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