Vichyssoise sounds so hoity-toity. In fact, most well-meaning folks donâ€™t even know how to pronounce it correctlyâ€¦ you DO pronounce the last s like a â€œzâ€ as in vee-she-shwaz as opposed to the supposedly more genteel vee-shee-shwa. At any rate, it is the absolutely simplest soup to make and if you canâ€™t say vee-she-shwaz then try “leek and potato soupâ€¦coldâ€. Actually, the base soup was most probably the hot version of Louis Escoffierâ€™s recipe number 696 in his Guide Culinaire published circa 1903 orperhaps an earlier version of the soup published 1869. Vichyssoise was first served at the Ritz Carlton in New York at the turn of the 20th centuryâ€¦ and the only change was that the soup was served by the chef chilled or cold. Thus vichyssoise and leek and potato are one and the same, they just have different serving temperatures. Imagine if I served pork sinigang cold and named it coagulated fatssoise soupâ€¦ think I would become famous?
To make, thinly slice up the white stems only of say 5-8 medium sized leeks (Filipino size, just 2-3 of the humongous western versions). Peel and slice one medium sized white onion. Peel and thinly slice up 3-4 medium potatoes. In a heavy casserole (such as a Le Creuset), heat up a nice blob of butter, then sautÃ© the leeks and onion over the medium heat for several mintues until tender and the aroma is compelling. Add the sliced potatoes, add 4-5 cups of chicken stock and cover and simmer for 15-20 minutes until it is all cooked. Next use a hand-held pureeing gadget or blender to mash it all up and add some cream or milk and stir together. Season with salt and white pepper and serve with deep fried thin slices of leek. Do not let the soup boil after you have added the cream or milk as it may curdle. This soup is terrific hot and pretty good cold.