Hardy Plumbing
June 14, 2006

Chef du Jour Jason Weiner, Co-Owner/Executive Chef At Almond

Everyone knows that Almond in Bridgehampton is one of the best restaurants around. Locals love the great food, reasonable prices and a laid-back atmosphere. Richard Jay Scholem of the New York Times reported that Almond boasts "honest, unpretentious French bistro fare at its best."

Jason Weiner is the man behind the cuisine. The chef, who was trained on the West Coast, was part of the opening crew of AQUA in Las Vegas and, before opening Almond, manned the kitchen at the Bellagio Hotel in Vegas. He's a veteran of Nick & Toni's in East Hampton and China Grill in Manhattan.

Potato Leek Soup With White Truffle Oil

Serves: 6

4 large leeks (white part only, split in half and thoroughly rinse)

1 large Yukon Gold potato (peeled and medium diced)

1/2 stick of Butter

1/4 cup dry white wine

1 sprig each of thyme, parsley, and tarragon

1 bay leaf

1 quart chicken stock (if using a store-bought product, dilute with half water)

1/2 cup crème fraiche

1 small bunch of chives(chopped)

Salt and White Pepper to taste

White truffle oil

• In a heavy bottomed pot on low flame put the butter, leeks, potatoes and sprinkle in a couple pinches of salt. Stir often with a wooden spoon until the potatoes and leeks become translucent. You don't want the vegetables to take on any color so attention and a low flame are important. Add the wine. Tie up the herbs and bay leaf in a bundle with butcher's twine and add to the pot. When the wine is no longer releasing an alcohol aroma add the stock. Simmer until the potatoes are soft. Take the herbs out of the pot. Puree in a blender with the crème fraiche. Adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper. Sometimes the soup needs a squeeze of lemon as well. Pour the soup into warm bowls; garnish with chives and a drizzle of truffle oil.

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