It's easy to form a nostalgic attachment to this homey soup that's chock full of earthly vegetables and cooks up in under an hour.
2 tablespoons sweet butter
1 plump shallot, peeled, trimmed, and sliced paper-thin
2 medium-sized leeks, white part only, trimmed, split, washed free of all grit, and coarsely chopped
2 medium-sized carrots, scraped, split, and cut into 2-inch pieces
1 rib celery, cut into 2-inch pieces
1 medium-sized onion, peeled and spiked with 1 clove
1 small turnip, peeled and quartered (optional)
2 medium-sized potatoes, peeled and quartered
1 small slice peeled pumpkin (optional)
1 bouquet garni consisting of 1 bay leaf, 1 sprig parsley, 1 sprig thyme, and one 2-inch piece dried orange peel (optional), bound together with cotton string
5 cups boiling water
1. Melt the butter in a soup kettle over low heat.
2. Saute the shallot and leeks slowly until almost melted.
3. Add all the other ingredients and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer and allow to cook for 45 to 50 minutes.
4. Discard the bouquet garni and spiked onion. Pass the remaining solids through a food mill or sieve and return the puree to the broth. Stir well.
5. Adjust the seasoning with salt and serve.
Source: Priscilla, Chester, Connecticut
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