FRONT BURNER: Easy potato soup gets lift from almonds, lemon and parsley

Potato Soup With Almonds, Garlic and Lemon 
(Arkansas Democrat-Gazette/Kelly Brant)
Potato Soup With Almonds, Garlic and Lemon (Arkansas Democrat-Gazette/Kelly Brant)

I think it's safe to say we could all use something simple and easy to make after last week's feast.

But we shouldn't have to sacrifice flavor and quality for the sake of convenience.

The cooler weather has put me in the mood for soup and this one, adapted from Christopher Kimball's Milk Street, just happens to call for a combination of pantry staples and ingredients I had leftover from last week's endeavors: potatoes, parsley, lemon, broth, garlic, onion and almonds. And it cooks in about 30 minutes, making it pretty darn fast, too.

The potatoes and almonds give the soup just enough body to be filling, while the parsley and lemon keep the flavor bright. For a vegan/vegetarian soup, be sure to use vegetable broth.

Potato Soup With Almonds, Garlic and Lemon

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, plus more to serve
  • ¼ cup slivered OR sliced almonds (I used sliced)
  • 1 pound russet potatoes, peeled and cut into ¾-inch chunks
  • 1 medium yellow onion, finely chopped (I used a Peruvian sweet onion)
  • 8 or so cloves garlic, smashed and slipped from their papery skins
  • Kosher salt and ground black pepper
  • 4 cups chicken broth OR vegetable broth
  • ½ cup fresh flat-leaf parsley, roughly chopped, plus more to serve
  • Juice from 1 lemon

In a medium saucepan, combine 2 tablespoons oil and the almonds. Place the pan over medium and cook, stirring occasionally, until lightly browned, about 3 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the almonds to a small bowl; set aside.

To the oil remaining in the pan, stir in the potatoes, onion, garlic, and ½ teaspoon each salt and pepper. Cook over medium, stirring occasionally, until the onions are translucent and the potatoes begin to soften, about 10 minutes.

Add half of the fried almonds, all of the broth and 1 cup water; bring to a simmer over medium-high. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 20 to 25 minutes or until the potatoes are tender. Remove from the heat and cool, uncovered, for about 5 minutes.

Stir in the parsley. Working in batches in a traditional blender, puree the mixture until smooth. Return the soup to the pot and warm over low, stirring until heated through. Stir in the lemon juice, then taste and season with salt and pepper. Serve sprinkled with additional parsley and the remaining almonds and a drizzle of olive oil if desired.

Makes about 4 servings.

Recipe adapted from Christopher Kimball's Milk Street

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