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Caramelized Leek Soup

    2 pounds leeks (white and pale green parts only; about 2 bunches)
    3 tablespoons unsalted butter
    1 1/4 teaspoons sugar
    1/4 cup vermouth
    3 1/2 cups chicken broth
    finely sliced fresh chives for garnish

  Halve leeks lengthwise and thinly slice crosswise. In a large bowl
 of cold water wash leeks well and lift from water into a large sieve
 to drain. In a 6-quart heavy kettle cook leeks in butter over
 moderately low heat, stirring occasionally, until some begin to turn
 golden, about 40 minutes. Stir in sugar and cook, stirring
 occasionally, 10 minutes. Stir in vermouth and cook, stirring
 occasionally, until liquid is evaporated and most leeks are golden,
 10 to 15 minutes. Deglaze kettle with 1/2 cup broth and cook,
 stirring occasionally, 10 minutes more, until liquid is evaporated
 and leeks are deep golden. Add remaining 3 cups broth and bring soup
 just to a boil. Season soup with salt and pepper. Serve soup
 garnished with chives.