Serves 4, or 6 as a starter.
2 Tbsp. olive oil
6 cups celery, strings removed and chopped
2 onions, diced
1 large russet potato, peeled and diced
1 clove garlic
6 cups chicken or vegetable broth
1 tsp. salt
1 bay leaf
1 cup whipping cream
Sauté celery and onion in olive oil until fragrant, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and cook 1 minute. Add all remaining ingredients except cream and cook over medium heat until vegetables are tender, about 25 minutes. Remove bay leaf and discard. Remove 1 cup of cooked celery and reserve; puree remaining soup in batches with blender or hand blender. Return to heat and stir in reserved celery and cream. Heat to a bare simmer and serve.