I started with a large frying pan with water, gave it a double pinch of salt and started processing the leeks. I cut the green tops of four leeks off and washed them well, (they often collect sand and dirt). I cut them into quarter inch pieces and placed in the boiling water. Next I cut up five red potatoes and they went in next with 6 bay leaves. They need 20 minutes to cook at least.
4 green tops leeks
5 red potatoes
6 bay leaves
While the leeks are cooking, this is a good time to assemble the spices to match your tastes. NOTE: do not salt at this point, salt will be coming with the finishing ingredients.
The primary spices in descending order are:
Cayenne pepper, Kathy had also thrown in some dried habaneros, so we decided to add one and plan on eating our supper with a couple paper tissues :)
Rosemary, I use fresh and am careful not to overdo it, you can make your simmer sauce bitter with too much rosemary.
I mix them dry in a small bowl and taste as I go along. Now heading for the finish line. First check to make sure the potatoes are done and the leeks are tender, (every once in a while I run into red potatoes that are ornery and take a long time to cook). Turn the burner down to a low setting, from now on this is a simmer sauce. As you add the final ingredients, take your time, get each one completely mixed in. A whisk can be very handy.
1/4 cup cheddar cheese powder
1/8 cup powdered milk
1/4 cup peanuts ( you can put them in earlier, but I prefer a little crunch, also salted is OK, we are going to taste for salt shortly)
Now, what you should have is a thick soup. It is time to make any final adjustments.