|Sweet Potato Vichyssoise|
I don't know when, where, or how this recipe idea came into my head, but I do suspect why. This summer started sweaty, and suspect that may have had something to do with it! But what sane person is all "yeaaaah, sweet potatoes cold!" Can you think of any other one thing that is a regular and also cold sweet potato based dish, because all I'm coming up with are things that are not good served cold: sweet potato casserole, sweet potato fries, baked sweet potatoes, soups, etc. You get the idea. As a disclaimer, I'm really not a huge fan of the humble, servicable pot-a-toe. I appreciate it. I'll eat them, sometimes. Thanksgivingtimes. The same goes for things with cream included. But I've grown increasingly fond of throwing sweet potatoes into things, and rather like them. And I did really want a cold soup that wasn't a gazpacho. Good thing I'm not sane though, amirite?!?
|Where it all starts: the glamorous kitchen sink.|
Somehow, somewhere, sometime in July, while probably lying in my bathtub for my 10th freezing shower of the day, inspiration struck: what about a cold soup with something I like - sweet potato? In fact, as I started to explore options and do research to find out if it would be possible (I really hate wasting food), I was surprised that not too many sources had tried something like this. My only two solid leads were Marcus Samuelsson and Design Love Fest. It may have taken way longer to actually get around to making this soup, but it was worth it when I did, and I'm glad that I've got enough frozen that I can defrost and easily make a quick lunch or dinner of it. I'm fairly certain it'll taste pretty good hot, but why mess with a good thing?
It's filling, mild to spicy, and easy to adapt as you want. I really loved it with a garnish of scallions, a dash more of cayenne, and a hearty dash of soy. Consider this your base, and get creative for other iterations of it (chipotle? peanuts? WHY NOT), or with toppings. I've already been mentally cooking up version 2.0. We're getting close to the tail end of it, so why not try this lovely orange hued soup during the dog days of summer in September?
Notes: I planned to freeze and keep it, so I immediately ruled out using cream, despite it being a vichyssoise; cream just gets disgusting when frozen and defrosted. Nobody wants to eat baby vomit! This mostly vegetarian (if you use vegetable stock, or 100% vegan if you use oil instead of the butter) recipe does freeze and keep well.
|First blend: Sweet Potato Vichyssoise|
|Second blend: Sweet Potato Vichyssoise|
Sweet Potato Vichyssoise
|Sweet Potato Vichyssoise|
3-4 Tbsp butter
6 cups diced leeks (from approximately 10 leeks)
9 cups peeled, diced sweet potatoes (from approximately 3 lbs)
½ cup white wine (something with good acidity)
7-8 cups of low sodium vegetable or chicken broth
1 tsp tumeric
up to one tsp cayenne (start with ¼ tsp if you are a sissy)
2 tsp ground ginger
zest and juice of one lemon
salt and pepper to taste
1) Melt butter over medium heat in a large soup pot or Dutch oven.
2) Saute leeks over medium for approximately twenty, until they become soft and slightly transparent, and the bottom of the pot begins to develop a brown glaze.
3) Deglaze the pot with your wine, stir, and cook the leeks and wine for 3 to 5 minutes.
4) Add sweet potatoes, saute 3-5 minutes stirring to thoroughly incorporate.
5) Add 6 cup of stock to the pot, turn heat to high, and bring to a simmer. Lower to medium-low to maintain, and cook, party covered for approximately 45 minutes, or until the potatoes are soft.
6) Add tumeric, ¼ (or more) tsp cayenne, 1 tsp ginger, salt and pepper to taste, and 1 cup broth. Stir to incorporate the spices and let cool 10 minutes.
7) Blend, either in batches in a stand blender, or with an immersion blender. Let cool 1-2 hours.
8) Add more salt to taste, and ⅛-1/4 tsp more cayenne, the zest and juice of a lemon, and the remaining 1 tsp ginger.
9) Blend slowly with one more cup of broth.
10) Chill in a refrigerator until cold, and serve to your adoring fans!
Garnish ideas: scalions, toasted sesame seeds, a dash of soy, peanuts, more lemon zest, your spoon, etc.