by Chef Paul Short, Madison Area Technical College Culinary Arts Chef Instructor
From our 2008 Wollersheim Winery Open House
2lbs. or 3 large Leeks
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/2 cup sliced shallots
1/3 cup sliced onions
1 cup Prairie Fumé wine
kosher salt, to taste
fresh ground pepper, to taste
1/2 lb. (1 large) Russet potato peeled
1 tablespoon minced garlic
8 sprigs thyme
2 sprigs Italian parsley
2 bay leaves
1/2 teaspoon black peppercorns
5 1/2 to 6 1/2 cups chicken stock
3/4 cup heavy cream warmed
1/2 cup minced chives
Extra virgin olive oil to taste
Fresh ground pepper to taste
1/4 cup coarse chopped bacon
1. Remove the top green part of the leeks down to the light green part of the leeks. Slice lengthwise down the leek to the roots without slicing through the root. Using a large container filled with cold water dip the leeks, roots facing upward, into the water and allow them to sit; this will loosen any dirt inside of the leek. After a while swirl the leeks in the water to further loosen the dirt. Remove the leeks from the water and wash them under running water to remove any remaining dirt. Place clean leeks on cutting board and chop leeks down to roots (remove roots).
2. In a large pot place leeks, butter, sliced shallots, and sliced onions. Put over medium to low heat and let ingredients sweat, do not let them brown. When the mixture becomes transparent add Prairie Fumé and continue to cook for about 4 minutes. Season mixture with salt and ground pepper. Cut potato into cubes and add to mixture. Add minced garlic and sachet.
3. Add Chicken stock to mixture and bring to a simmer. When potato is cooked completely remove the sachet and puree mixture in a blender in small batches and return to heat. Simmer mixture on very low and stir in the warmed heavy cream.
4. While soup is simmering cook the coarse chopped bacon to crisp. Serve the soup garnished with minced chives, extra virgin olive oil, ground pepper and chopped bacon.
SERVES: 6 to 8