¼ pound greens such as arugula, spinach, or nettles
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 leek, cleaned and sliced ½” thick
1 teaspoon salt, plus more for seasoning
½ pound potatoes, peeled (if desired) and chopped to ½” cubes
3 ½ cups broth (low-sodium if store bought) or water
¼ teaspoon black pepper
2 cloves garlic, sliced
Prepare an ice bath by filling a bowl with water and a decent amount of ice. Bring a pot of salted water to a boil, and add your greens (use tongs if you’re using nettles!). Blanch for just 15 seconds (30 seconds if using nettles), then drain and add to the ice bath immediately. Let sit for 5 minutes, then drain and dry as best as possible by putting the greens into a dish towel and gently wringing out the additional water. Set aside.
Heat a large pot over medium heat and add the oil. When oil is hot, add leeks, garlic, and a big pinch of salt. Cook, stirring often to prevent garlic from burning, for 3-5 minutes or until leeks are softened but not taking on any color. Add potatoes and broth, bring up to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. Simmer for 15 minutes with the lid ajar. Check to make sure potatoes are cooked through, then add your greens. Simmer an additional 5-10 minutes, then add all contents to a blender and blend until soup is smooth. Season to taste with salt and black pepper. Just before serving, add a squeeze of lemon juice, and garnish with a dollop of Horseradish Yogurt, a drizzle of Leek Top Oil, and any fresh herbs you’d like. Enjoy any leftovers within 1 day of making.
Leek Top Oil
Makes ¾ cup
Green tops from 2 leeks, trimmed, cleaned, and sliced ½” thin (about 1 ½ cups chopped)
1 cup extra virgin olive oil
Prepare an ice bath by filling a bowl with water and a decent amount of ice. Bring a pot of salted water to a boil, and add your leek tops. Blanch for 1-1 ½ minutes, just so the tops are tender, then drain and add to the ice bath immediately. Let sit for 5 minutes, then drain and dry as best as possible by putting the leek tops into a dish towel and gently wringing out the additional water.
In a blender (or food processor), combine leek tops, oil, and a big pinch of salt. Blend until relatively smooth but not completely pureed. Place a fine mesh strainer over a bowl (make sure there’s a good amount of clearance between the bottom of the strainer and the bowl’s base!), and pour the leek mixture in. Leave undisturbed for at least 20 minutes, ideally an hour. Save pulp for another use (see note), and store oil in a clean jar in the fridge. Ideally use within 10 days.
Note: Save your pulp for adding to scrambled eggs, vinaigrettes, spreading on toast, or to stir into yogurt for a dipping sauce.
Makes ½ cup
1 ½ - 2 tablespoons grated fresh horseradish (or 1 tablespoon prepared horseradish)
¼ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vinegar
½ cup yogurt
In a bowl combine horseradish, salt, and vinegar and let sit for 10 minutes. Add yogurt and thin with water or olive oil if necessary. Season to taste with salt and a few grinds of black pepper.