Heirloom Potato Recipes


This page is linked to the Kenosha Potato Project web pages. See these links for


Really Tasty Leek - Potato Soup

We credit Marcus Walser, Cook's Illustrated Test Cook (www.cooksillustrated.com) for this recipe.

The challenge of a great tasting Leek - Potato Soup, Marcus Walser explains, is too obtain a thick consistency, but not stodgy and gluey. Also he tells us that Julia Child thought so highly of this soup to make it the very first recipe in her "Mastering the Art of French Cooking".

I've tried this recipe one evening and made this soup in about 40 minutes. Without going into all the details that you'll find on Cooks Illustrated, Marcus Walser explains that the blender or food processor is the culprit of gluey soups, because the whipping of the blender makes the potato release too much starch.

"Blended soups" remind me of baby food! I like adult soups with chunks of vegetable. But obviously you want the potato to build the foundation of the soup consistency. While I was reading this recipe I immediately thought of the potato variety Sequoia - this potato simmered in broth for 20 minutes breakes down without the need of a blender. Just by stirring the soup with a spatula the potato breaks apart.

  • Start with 2 cups of water and 2 cups of light broth in which you simmer for 20 minutes the green part of the leek. Once the green leek has released flavor in the broth, drain the broth and set aside. I used 2 leek stalkes.
  • In the large saucepan stir fry the white part of the leek and one onion (I also added a shallot) - add one teaspoon of salt. (In a non Vegan version use 2 - 4 tablespoon of butter - in the Vegan version use 1 - 2 tablespoon of olive oil). Keep strirring for about 10 minutes.
  • Add the broth set aside and the potato cut in chunks. I always cook potato with the skins. One large potato is enough. Bring to a hard boil, then simmer for 15 - 20 minutes. Stir occasionally with a spatula and observe how the potato breaks apart.
  • The Test Cook suggests to toast a slice of bread, cut it into cubes and stir it into the soup in the last 5 minutes - the toasted bread adds body to the soup.
  • Notice there is no cream in this recipe!

Find this recipe on CooksIllustrated.com for a more detailed explanation of the details of how the Test Cook developed this recipe.

Similar recipes to compare


Cultivar suggestions

Round shaped tubers - very starchy, like Sequoia.


We are interested to link specific potato recipes to specific potato cultivars. We are convinced that many heritage cultivars have been saved because they have been working best to prepare favorite dishes.

How do you select the cultivars that you grow in your garden?

Would you be enticed to try different cultivars if these would make interesting dishes?

We believe that future generations will more likely grow heritage cultivars if we offer records and recipes of best use in the kitchen!

Please email recipes suggestions to: recipes@curzio.com

Go to our home page - more recipes - Ask a question