Every year, it seems the arctic grip of winter holds on to the Palouse for a little longer than other regions of the country, so while my friends were posting pictures of themselves sunbathing in 75 degree weather in New York, Chicago, and elsewhere, I was wearing cold weather boots and scarves long enough to develop a complex. I do enjoy cold weather, and I would never, EVER trade winter for the "seasonable" (read: BORING) winter weather of the Southern states, but I am still one who enjoys all of the seasons, particularly the change of the seasons. When the seasons do not change as scheduled, I am not only disappointed, I am completely devastated.
It was with a heavy heart and a sideways glance at my spring wardrobe still packed away in the closet that I planned to make this soup, and despite my gloomy attitude after not receiving the bounty of spring on time, it really did cheer me up. Smoked sausage, leeks, celery, and carrots have rescued me from the pit of late seasonal depression, and for that, I am eternally grateful.
Sausage and Leek Soup
(From Gourmet, 2003)
4 medium leeks (white and pale green parts only), halved lengthwise, then chopped
1 large carrot, finely chopped
1 celery rib, finely chopped
1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter
8 cups chicken stock or low-sodium chicken broth (64 fluid ounces)
2 medium boiling potatoes
5 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup thinly sliced smoked kielbasa (I used smoked turkey sausage)
2 teaspoons chopped fresh marjoram (I used rosemary)
White pepper to taste