Jim’s Potato Leek Soup

6 cups water
5-6 large leeks – cleaned with green parts removed
3 large sweet potatoes
7 medium red potatoes
3 large cloves garlic - crushed
2 teaspoons olive oil
2 tablespoons herbs de Provence (available in the spice section of most supermarkets)
1 ½ teaspoons kosher salt
1 teaspoon pepper

Heat large stockpot over medium-high heat. Add olive oil, leeks and 1 teaspoon of salt. Gently sauté leeks over medium heat until soft but do not brown them. Add the garlic cloves and cook until fragrant; about 30 seconds to a minute. Next add the herbs de Provence and 3 cups of water. Bring the mixture to a boil and let it reduce by half. In the meantime, peel and dice all the potatoes into ½ inch pieces. Add potatoes as you peel and dice. Add remaining salt. When the water has reduced, skim any foam and most of the herbs. Add 3 more cups of water and bring back to a boil. Simmer for 30-40 minutes or until potatoes are soft. Cool to room temperature. When soup is cool, puree in batches in a blender or food processor.

To serve: reheat over medium-low heat, adding water as needed to maintain consistency. Ladle into large serving bowl or individual bowls and garnish with a drizzle of crème fraiche.