Irish Ale Potato Cheddar Soup with Beer Battered Leeks

March 15, 2019

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Yummmmmmmm! Irish Ale Potato Cheddar Soup with Beer Battered Leeks! Comfort food at its finest!  This potato ale soup is so creamy and flavorful on its own with that gorgeous sharp Kerry Gold Cheddar swirled into the mix, it is sheer bliss. It is then topped with a sprinkle of fresh thyme and just a bit of red pepper flakes to give it a little kick.

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I would’ve said it couldn’t have gotten any better….but that was before I got a taste of those beer battered leeks. SQUEEEEE!!! Those fried leeks are so crispy with a lovely delicate flavor – they just melt in your mouth! I know deep frying stuff can be a bit of a pain in the neck, but seriously….you’ve just got to do it for these leeks. Sooooooo worth it!

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I must admit, I was a bit nervous when I was making this soup. You see, several years ago when the Husband and I were on holiday in Newfoundland, we went into a local brewery and ordered some cheddar ale soup to go along with our pints. We were expecting a little cup, but then big ole honking bowls of soup came out. It was pretty tasty I must say, so foolishly we gobbled it all up. We finished our pints somewhere along the way and ordered seconds. When we got up to leave we couldn’t believe it. It felt as though that soup had tripled in size or that I had somehow eaten all of St. Johns. I have never been that full in my life. We could barely move. I thought someone was going to have to roll us back to our hotel. When we finally did make it back there, we just laid about the place for hours moaning about our bellies. Good times right?

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But this Irish Ale Potato Cheddar Soup was thankfully nothing like that. Although it is hearty and filling, it isn’t heavy at all. I would recommend that you use a lighter ale or lager with this recipe to avoid weighing it and yourself down! Goodness knows there are parties & parades you’ve got to get to. And green beer to guzzle…

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Or maybe you stay in this year. Seen one parade, you’ve seen them all? You could just cozy up with a nice warming bowl of this lovely soup all topped with those glorious little leeks and enjoy some quality me time. Everyone knows beer has no business being green anyway!

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Irish Ale Potato Cheddar Soup with Beer Battered Leeks

  • Servings: 6
  • Difficulty: easy - but a bit messy what with the frying of the leeks. SO worth it though!
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recipe from: How Sweet Eats

Ingredients:

For the Soup:

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 sweet onion, diced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 1/2 pounds yukon gold potatoes, peeled and chopped
  • cups low-sodium chicken stock
  • 12 ounces irish ale or your favorite beer
  • 8 ounces Kerry Gold sharp cheddar cheese, freshly grated, plus more for topping
  • 3 to 4 tablespoons cream, for drizzling
  • fresh herbs for garnish, like thyme, oregano or basil
  • red pepper flakes for garnish

For the Beer Battered Leeks:

  • 1 cup sliced leeks
  • cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 12 ounces irish ale or your favorite beer
  • vegetable or canola oil for frying

Directions:

For the Soup:

Heat a large pot over medium heat and add the olive oil and butter. Stir in the onion, garlic, salt and pepper. Cook, stirring often, until the onions are soft and even begin to caramelize slightly, about 10 to 15 minutes. Add in the potatoes, stock and ale. Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce it to medium-low and let it simmer until the potatoes are fork tender, about 20 minutes. Turn off the heat.
Carefully pour the contents in a high-powered blender (if needed, you can do it in two batches). Blend until smooth. Pour the soup back into the pot. Or alternatively, you can use an immersion blender and just keep the soup in the pot. Once blended, heat it over low heat, stirring well. Stir in the grated cheese, one handful at a time, until it completely melts. Make sure you add the cheese SLOWLY over low heat, so it melts right into the soup. Taste and season additionally if desired – you may want a little more salt and pepper depending on the saltiness of your cheese!
To serve the soup, drizzle 1 tablespoon of cream over top. Top with a handful of the beer battered leeks, a pinch of crushed red pepper flakes, some fresh herbs and pepper. Serve immediately.
For the Beer Battered Leeks:
Cover a large plate with a paper towel or two.
Heat about 2 to 3 inches of oil over medium heat in a heavy bottomed saucepan. Heat the oil to be about 350° F. In this instance, Use a candy/deep fry thermometer to ensure it reaches and remains at the correct temperature.
Whisk together 1 cup of flour, salt, pepper, garlic powder and paprika. Whisk in the beer until the batter is smooth. Place the other cup of flour in a plate. Add the leeks to the beer batter in batches, covering them completely. Remove them from the beer batter and place them in the flour on the plate, tossing to coat. Shake off any excess flour. Add the coated leeks to the oil and fry until the batter is golden brown and flakey. Remove the leeks with a slotted spoon and place them on a paper towel to drain and excess grease.
Enjoy!
Irish Ale Potato Cheddar Soup with Beer Battered Leeks brought to you by: Runcible Eats (www.leaandjay.com)
Useful links for Kitchen Tools & Ingredients for Irish Ale Potato Cheddar Soup with Beer Battered Leeks:
Le Creuset 5 1/2 qt. dutch oven
Breville Immersion Blender
Candy/Deep Fry Stainless Steel Thermometer
Stainless Steel Spider Strainer
KerryGold Aged Cheddar Cheese
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Irish Beer & Cheese Chicken Pot Pies

March 15, 2012

Two more days til St. Patrick’s Day ya’ll! Today I have a fabulous recipe for you that will definitely make it into a higher rotation on your menu playlist than just a St. Patrick’s Day hit. So here you have it, one of the great comfort food staples made even more scrumptious with the addition of Smithwick’s Irish Ale and Kerrygold Cheddar cheese. That’s right, Irish Beer & Cheese Chicken Pot Pies! Yum, yum and triple yum!

These pot pies have all the most tasty ingredients in them. I’ve already mentioned the beer and cheese, so I imagine I have quite a few of you there. However, these pies also have bacon, leeks, mushrooms and did I mention there was some Vodka thrown into the crust for good measure. Hooo-wee! That is a whole lot of yumminess in one little ole dish!

I baked a few of mine in individual mini pie tins, which I found at Crate & Barrel,

and a few in ramekins topped with that delicious buttery and flaky pie crust.

The ramekins version are easier to pull off and my husband like these best because they held a larger amount of that savoury filling. Being a sucker for all things bread and crust, I loved the individual mini pie version, which I think looks absolutely adorable.  Of course both versions were equally delicious. My husband loves a good pot pie, so I’ve tried quite a few recipes. This one is at the top of his list! Give your St. Patrick’s Day revellers one of these Irish Beer & Cheese Chicken Pot Pies so that they can keep up their strength for all of the celebrations they have planned!

Irish Beer & Cheese Chicken Pot Pies

recipe slightly adapted from: The Beeroness

Ingredients:

For the crust:

  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 Tablespoons sugar
  • 5 Tablespoons butter cold, cut into cubes
  • 1/4 cup shortening
  • 2 Tablespoons vodka
  • 2 Tablespoons cold water

For the filling:

  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil
  • ½ cup sliced leeks (white and very light green portion only)
  • 3 large cloves garlic, minced
  • 5 strips of bacon, chopped
  • 3 cups mushrooms, chopped
  • 3 cups raw chicken, cut into cubes (or the breast of one rotisserie chicken)
  • 2/3 cup chicken broth
  •  1 1/3 cup Smithwick’s Irish Ale
  • ¼ cup flour
  • ½ cup corn kernels
  • ½ cup peas
  • 2 cups shredded Kerrygold cheddar cheese
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • ¼ cup melted butter

Directions:

Combine 1 cups of flour, salt, and sugar in a food processor, pulse a few times until its combined. Add the butter and the shortening and process until it forms a ball around the blade, about 2 minutes.

Add the remaining flour and process until well incorporated, about 1 minute.

Move to a bowl and add the water and the vodka, combine with a spatula or wooden spoon or merely knead it with your hands.

Form the dough into a disk. Wrap the disks in plastic wrap and chill until very firm, about two hours.

Preheat oven to 400° F.

In a pan over medium, high heat, add the olive oil. Once the oil is hot, add the leeks and the garlic, sauté until leeks are soft.

Add the bacon and cook for 2 minutes.

Add the mushrooms and cook until soft and darkened.

Add the chicken and sauté until cooked through, about 5 minutes. I have also used the breast of a rotisserie chicken instead of raw chicken. If you would rather do this, add the shredded rotisserie chicken in after you have added the beer.

In a separate bowl, add 2/3 cup of broth and the flour, stir until combined. Pour mixture into the pan through a small mesh strainer to remove any lumps.

Add the beer to the pan and stir to combine. (if using rotisserie chicken, add it in at this point) Add the peas, corn, cheese, salt and pepper. Stir until the cheese has melted and is well combined with the broth.

At this point you must decide whether you are using the mini pie tins or ramekins.

If you are using the mini pie tins:

 Roll out your crust dough. Cut the bottom crusts and line the pie tin with them. Fill with chicken filling. Cut your pie lid out, slightly smaller than the bottom crust. Lay it over top of the filled crust and crimp the edges of the bottom and top crusts together. Cut a couple vent holes in the top crust.

If you are using ramekins:

Roll out your crust dough. Cut out the lids for your pies, slightly larger (about 1″) than the ramekins you are using. Pour chicken mixture into small, portion sized, oven safe ceramic dishes. Grease around the top edge of the dish with butter. Drape the crust lid over the top of the ramekins. Cut a couple of vent holes in the top crust.

Brush the top of the pot pies with an egg wash or melted butter. Bake at 400°F for  20-25 minutes until golden brown. Let sit for 5-10 minutes before serving.

Enjoy!


Irish Rarebit

March 8, 2012

For day 8 of my St. Patrick’s Day recipes, I thought I’d post one for Irish Rarebit. This version is a bit of a twist on the classic Welsh Rarebit recipe. What makes this recipe particularly “Irish” is the use of Smithwick’s Irish Ale (first brewed 300 years ago in Kilkenny) and Kerrygold Cheddar Cheese as well as an Irish Brown Bread (a St. Patrick’s Day recipe offering of mine from 2011) base.

For the Traditional Welsh Rarebit recipe see this post on one of my favourite blogs, Frugal Feeding. The traditional Welsh version is very simple. No embellishments like paprika, tomato or bacon. And whatever you do, for heaven’s sake, don’t use French’s yellow mustard in that Welsh recipe! 🙂 All that being said, Rarebit, no matter which nationality is attached to it, is essentially cheese on toast.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not belittling this concoction at all, cheese on toast is absolutely dee-lish. I’ve had it for breakfast, lunch and dinner. I never get sick of it. It’s always fantastic! And what makes this Irish Rarebit particularly yummy besides it’s stellar Irish ingredients, is that I added some freshly sliced tomato and crispy bacon slices into the mix. Simplicity at it’s best!

Irish Rarebit

Recipe adapted from: Elizabeth Kelly for the Examiner

serves: 4

Ingredients:

  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 Cup Smithwicks Irish Ale
  • 1 Tablespoon Butter
  • 1 tsp. Coleman’s English Mustard
  • 1/8 tsp. Cayenne Pepper
  • 12 oz. Kerrygold Sharp Cheddar cheese, grated
  • 4 slices of Irish Brown Bread
  • Bacon and Tomato slices as you wish

Directions:

In a small bowl, whisk egg. Set aside.

In a double boiler, combine Smithwick’s Irish ale, butter, Coleman’s mustard and cayenne pepper. After the butter has melted, whisk in Kerrygold Cheddar cheese a little at a time. Stir until cheese is melted and mixture in smooth.

Whisk in egg and stir until mixture thickens. DO NOT BOIL.

Toast Brown Bead and top with tomato or bacon if you wish.

Spoon cheese mixture over the toast and pop it into a toaster over or broiler until the cheese topping has just started to brown.

Enjoy!


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