Hotlanta? Yeah, that’s the name granted this city when it is summer time, but not as of late. Not that I am one to complain about the cold; I mean I am from Philadelphia, but this winter weather here in Atlanta has been the coldest I have ever experienced here. It was like 5 degrees-F last weekend and yesterday it didn’t break 32.
Again, I’m not complaining about the weather. I’m really not. I am whining about what the cold-ass weather can do. You know like kill you car battery, freeze your locks, (hair and car), zap the battery on your iPod, deter your long overdue home-gym-in-the-cold-ass-no-heat-having-garage workout, and just plain make you stay in the warm heated abode.
Well we woke last Saturday to find that there was no hot water, absolutely none! The pipe in the external wall had frozen right at the water heater. Great, I’m thinking. Shortly it’ll be time for them to burst and spew wetness inside the wall where we’ll have to hire a burly, butt-crack revealing, plumber to tear up the laundry room to reveal the purse draining mishap.
But wait. The temperature never reached 30 degrees-F this day, but the sun shining on that particular side of the house for the length of time that it did gave the frozen pipe the opportunity to release my hot water back to us. And it did with no request for a hefty ransom. I was overjoyed. We remembered to let the faucet drip that night. All was well.
But was it?
No, no it wasn’t.
When Beck went to wash dishes. She noticed that the pressure seemed as if I was in the shower. But due to the fact that I was non-showered and standing in front of her, the thought went to maybe I broke character and decided to actually due a load of laundry. Um, nope. So why so little pressure?
Check the wall! Quiet. It’s not running, the wall. Further investigation led us to the guest bathroom where we could hear it. Dammit. The water is running and we can’t catch it.
Turns out, the supply line, that’s a big pipe that runs from the street to our house had burst. How this pipe burst, I don’t know. It couldn’t have frozen because we still had water, just no hot water. You know, the one that did freeze and I thought was going burst yet didn’t.
Nicely flooding the front yard.
We are replacing the pipe this week, but in the mean time, the water stays off most of the time. This means I have to trek across the front yard at zero-dark-thirty in the morning, in zero degree-F morning weather, in my robe and slippers, to turn the water on so I can bathe.
This is why one makes soup. To warm the soul and the bones.
I really just wanted to roast some garlic. I wanted the house to smell like sweet roasted garlic. So since I already had leaks on the brains, why not a roasted garlic, leek and potato soup? And so it was born.
Creamy Leek and Potato Soup with Roasted Garlic
1 large leek (or 2 medium sized) cleaned and sliced
3 russet potatoes 1 inch dice
2 bulbs garlic
4 rashers bacon cut into lardons
4 cups chicken stock
3/4 cup heavy cream
2 tsp white pepper
extra virgin olive oil
salt to taste
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees-F. Slice off the root end of the garlic just enough to expose the flesh. Place the bulbs in aluminum foil, drizzle with olive oil, cover and roast in the over for 45 minutes to 1 hour.
2. In a heavy bottom pot, cook bacon until crisp. Remove bacon and drain on paper towels. Drain off all but a tablespoon of bacon fat.
3. Add leeks to bacon fat and cook until softened. Add potatoes, white pepper, and stock. Squeeze in roasted garlic. Bring to a boil. Turn heat to a simmer. Cover and cook until potatoes are tender, about 35 minutes.
4. Add cream. Use an immersion blender to puree the soup into a creaminess of your choice. Alternatively, you can ladle the soup into a blender and blend it bit by bit. I chose to make it mostly creamy with a few bits of potato rustically remaining. Taste and sdjust seasoning.
I garnished the soup with cheddar cheese, the crisped bacon, and a drizzle of white truffle oil, and it was good.