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Lemony Leek Soup

14 November

Serves 6 – 8

The subtle flavors of the leek, lemon, and herbs combine perfectly in this silky smooth soup. Makes a memorable first course or a complete dish.

1 tablespoon butter
2 tablespoons olive oil
6 cups (about 8) thinly sliced leeks
1 carrot, thinly sliced
1 stalk celery, thinly sliced
6 cups chicken stock
1 tablespoon grated lemon zest
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
2 teaspoons fresh marjoram or 1 teaspoon dried
2 tablespoons chopped parsley
1/4 cup brown rice
1/2 cup milk or milk alternative (I use coconut milk)
sea salt and white pepper to taste
sour cream or yogurt and
3 tablespoons minced chives, for garnish

1. In a 4 – 5 quart saucepan, heat butter and oil; add leeks, carrot and celery and saute until softened.
2. Add chicken stock, lemon zest, lemon juice, marjoram, parsley, and rice and simmer, covered, for about 40 minutes until vegetables are very tender.
3. Puree in batches in a blender or food processor. Pour mixture back into saucepan; add milk, salt, and white pepper to taste. If soup is too thick, add extra milk or stock.
4. Heat soup through, but do not boil. Serve hot or cold, sprinkled with chives add a dollop of sour cream or yogurt.