Tonight was my first experiment with Julia Child. I enjoy cooking and I had a major burn today with Jillian Michaels’ Banish Fat, Boost Metabolism, so I decided to treat myself to some French cooking. I miss the days when I lived thisclose to a La Madeleine and could go drink vigorous cafe au laits and nosh chocolate croissants while reading…
I decided to go with the first recipe in the book to make the choosing easy and as it turned out, it was a pretty easy assignment. I decided to make a Potage Parmentier. This delightful(ly green) concoction consists simply of water, potatoes, leeks, parsley, butter or cream and salt!
This recipe is actually quite a healthy one as it stands but in my quest to shed some holiday weight (goal: size 2 by February 2!), I am trying to make the culinary classics more accessible to the health-conscious. I am a woman of balance. I must have balance on my plate. What is a meal full of vegetables without the muscle-building protein which would help me rebuild after my 5 miles & cardio workout this week? I cannot even eat a salad without some sort of balancing protein such as raw, chopped pecans, walnuts or almonds. It’s important. This dish would have paired splendidly with some lovely ground beef, but being the post-holiday heroine I am… I found some very large, very delicious-looking turkey wings in the freezer section! I also opted for 1 tbs. less salt & Smart Balance butter instead of whipping cream.
The turkey wings are currently baking in the oven with a sprinkling of heart-happy olive oil, rosemary (my absolute favorite seasoning) and a few sprigs of fresh parsley to compliment my soup.
I’m not a huge fan of onions. As a matter of fact, I despise onions to their very –er, root. Had I known what a stinking leek was before I chose this recipe, I would never have attempted this. I would have chosen the eggs chapter to begin with instead. A leek is a small, skinny plant in the onion family. However, I think the verdict vastly surpassed my expectations… It was like eating comfort food without all the guilt!
1 lb potato, peeled and diced
3 cups leeks, thinly sliced (white and tender green parts only)
2 quarts water
1 tablespoon salt
4-6 tablespoons whipping cream or 2-3 tablespoons softened butter
2-3 tablespoons minced parsley or chives
1 Simmer vegetables, water and salt together, partially covered, 40-50 minutes until vegetables are tender.
2 Mash the vegetables in the soup with a fork, or run through a food mill (I used a food processor). Correct seasoning.
3 Off heat and just before serving, stir in cream or butter by spoonfuls. Pour into a tureen or soup cups and decorate with the herbs.