This wholesome potato soup, with its delicate sweetness from the leeks, gets its smooth, richness from the cashew cream.
Begin with soaking raw cashews in ½ cup of water for 30 minutes. While cashews are soaking, heat a large soup pot over medium heat. Add one tablespoon of canola oil or ¼ cup vegetable broth to warm pan and sauté leeks until they begin to lightly brown. Add garlic, celery and potatoes. Cook until the vegetables begin to soften. Pour 6 cups of water or broth into the pot and bring to a boil. Immediately reduce to simmer and add salt, white pepper and Deb’s Seasoning. In a blender, puree cashews and the water in which they were soaking until graininess is gone and mixture is smooth. Stir cashew paste into soup. For a creamy, smooth soup, blend half or all of the soup mixture in a food processor, or use an immersion blender in the pot until the ingredients reach the desired consistency.
For a chunkier soup, just mash a few of the potatoes with a fork and stir. Taste to adjust seasonings. Simmer on low until ready to serve, but do not let the soup come to a boil. If it becomes too thick, thin with water or vegetable broth.
Russet potatoes are great in soups or mashed. They make a thick, starchy broth when cooked.