When Irish Eyes Are Smiling, sure ’tis like a morn in spring.
In the lilt of Irish laughter, you can hear the angels sing.
When Irish hearts are happy, all the world seems bright and gay,
And When Irish Eyes Are Smiling, sure, they steal your heart away.
John drops garlic in our CSA box regularly. I currently have oodles of garlic–more than I need, but I am not complaining. This subtly green potato soup has leeks, parsley and an entire bulb of garlic. Not to worry garlic breath, I know firsthand that cooking turns raw garlic’s sharp bite into gentle, mild flavor. This is hardneck garlic we’re talking about, Ranui Garden’s specialty, the finest quality.
Our fridge was holding leeks and two jars of fresh parsley. And our pantry held the Yukon Golds and red potatoes that came in the CSA box a few weeks ago. Robbie my prep cook cleaned the spuds but didn’t peel them. He just trimmed off their eyes and cut them into chunks.
We know potato skins contain good-for-you vitamins–that’s why Mr. Prep left them on. Besides, they are CSA organic–no spray snuck into these potatoes. The other benefit of leaving the skins on? Cooked skins resist blender blades which adds pleasant toothy texture. I fried up a couple of eggs over easy–and slid them on top of each bowlful.
This week we’re getting purple potatoes in our CSA box, but I don’t recommend the use of purple majesty potatoes in this soup—who knows what color you’d have with purple and green competing for the brightest hue in the blend. Better to go to the root cellar, or in our case in a basket in the pantry, where I’ve been stashing the less daring potato varietals.
My Dad was full-blood Irish. I am pretty sure his Irish eyes would be smiling happily and that my potato soup would steal his heart.
This flavorful pale green soup will get your eyes and taste buds smiling.
- 3 leeks
- 1 whole bulb garlic
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 5 medium potatoes, well scrubbed and trimmed of blemishes
- 6 cups vegetable broth
- ½ cup lightly packed parsley leaves
- Eggs, cooked over easy, optional
- Trim the root and all but one inch of the green from the leeks. Cut them in half lengthwise, and wash out any lingering dirt. Slice the leeks thinly, about 1/8-inch thick.
- Separate the cloves of garlic. Hit each with the side of a knife, just enough to smash a wee bit, so the paper is easily removed. Mince or press through a garlic press.
- Cut the potatoes in chunks, about ¾ -inch.
- Heat the olive oil in a pressure cooker or soup pot. Add the leeks and sauté on medium flame about 5 minutes. Add the garlic; cook and stir a few more minutes.
- Pour the vegetable broth over the garlic and leeks. Add the potatoes and parsley.
- For pressure cooking, bring to pressure and cook 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and allow the pressure to come down naturally for another 5 minutes. Then release the remaining pressure by running under cold water.
- Without a pressure cooker, cover the soup and cook at least ½ hour, until the potatoes are very soft.
- Puree with an immersion blender or carefully in batches in the blender. (Beware hot liquids in a blender have the urge to get out and burn the nearest victim, so only fill the blender half full each batch.) Return the blended soup to a pot.
- Serve hot, garnished with parsley. Float an egg, fried over easy, in each bowl of soup, if desired.