Crème Vichyssoise Glacée - American or French...Who Cares? It's Delicious!

This thick French soup is made with puréed leeks, onions, potatoes, cream, and chicken stock. While there is an ongoing debate about its origin – some claim it has French roots, while others insist that the soup is an American invention, there is no denying, this soup is always a show stopper.

Generally, the soup is served cold and is often garnished with fresh chopped chives, and as you will see in The French Cooking Academy's video below--it can also be served with a little special something on top.

INGREDIENTS (SERVES 4-6) 

  • 500g / 1lb potatoes (cut in rough chunks)  
  • 500g / 1lb leeks finely sliced (chopped mostly the white part with some of the greener part too 
  • A medium sized onion (finely sliced) 
  • 60 grams plain butter 
  • 1 tablespoon rock salt 
  • 1 bouquet garni 
  • 1 litre / 4 cups of water 
  • 250ml / 1 cup whole milk 
  • 250 ml / 1 cup heavy cream 

For the plating: 

  • 100 ml whipped cream 
  • 4 tablespoons finely chopped chives 

INSTRUCTIONS 

  1. Melt butter in pot on low heat and when fully melted stir in and sweat onions and leeks for 4-5 minutes. Check then to ensure no colourisation on the base of the pot as there must be no browning at all.  If there is a trace of colour, lower the heat.  Sweat for another 10 minutes. 
  2. Add potatoes, mix well and add water to cover the vegetables by a couple of centimetres.  Bring to boil on a high heat. 
  3. Once boiling, reduce the heat to medium and add salt, the bouquet garni and cook uncovered for about ½ an hour – the potatoes must be absolutely cooked.  When they are done, turn off the heat. 
  4. Remove the bouquet garni and blend soup with a stick blender until a smooth thick consistency is achieved. 
  5. Pass the soup through a sieve into a clean pan and press down with a wooden spoon so that any remaining lumps pass through the sieve. 
  6. Add cream and milk and stir in well.  Correct seasoning. 
  7. Bring back to a boil (to sterilise the soup), and once boiling point is reached, turn off the heat. 
  8. Transfer to a glass bowl by passing through a sieve a second time and then allow to cool.  Cover the bowl and place in a refrigerator until it is chilled to the fridge temperature. 
  9. Transfer to a dish to serve and if desired, add a dollop (quenelle) of whipped cream blended with chopped chives to the middle of the dish and sprinkle lightly with some more chives.  

Au Bon Gout Boutique Staff Comments
Comment # 1
- We found for a truly "white" vichyssoise soup, we used only the white parts of leeks

Comment # 2 - Stick to water (as in the recipe) or chicken broth, as other kinds of broth are darker in color and will also make your soup darker in color.

Comment # 3 - As the French Cooking Academy recommends, after making this soup, cool and store it in a glass container or bowl so it doesn't pick up any container flavors.  Ideally, cover the soup tightly with plastic wrap before chilling it overnight --again, to ensure it does not collect any unwanted flavors or tastes.

Comment # 4 - We found the soup tasted best when chilled overnight as it allowed all the flavors to fully blend and develop.

We recommend this Crème Vichyssoise video by French Cooking Academy.  Bon Appétit!


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