This is truly one of those soups that came about by me throwing stuff in the pot. I'd picked up a rather large rotisserie chicken after getting a steroid shot one day. Because who feels like cooking after that, am I right? It's pretty much routine for me to throw the chicken carcass into the crockpot and make broth out of it the night we have it. So there I was. I had leftover chicken. I had freshly made chicken broth. It also happened to be the day after the Super Bowl, which meant I also had a bunch of potato innards on hand from the Potato Skins the hubby and I had devoured on our holiday.
Chicken. Chicken broth. Very soft, almost mashed potatoes. What would you do?
I chose soup!
The soup turned out excellent for something that I just threw together. The hubby and I both thought it tasted like a lighter version of Olive Garden's Zuppa Toscana. I say lighter because I perceive chicken as being lighter than the sausage the restaurant chains uses in their's. The broth is light and creamy, and perfect for sopping up with crusty bread.
I started with onion and celery. I would have added carrot, but c'est la vie, I had none. I almost broke down and went to the store to grab some, but at the last minute, nixed the idea. I decided to see what the soup would taste like without it. Does that carrot make a huge difference?
I'm undecided. I don't think the taste was affected negatively, but I think I would have enjoyed the pop of color carrots bring. Plus, I'm of the mindset "the more veggies the better!"so I might add carrots in the future.
You could also add more veggies if you wanted. Off the top of my head, I'm thinking leeks, zucchini, mushrooms, turnips, peas... Any of those would make good additions. I'm sure there's many more but I'm not going to sit here naming veggies all morning, ha ha.
After I'd softened the onion and celery, I added salt, pepper, dried basil, dried oregano, thyme, and a bay leaf for seasoning.
The aforementioned homemade broth.
Leftover potato. Friends, soup is the perfect use for leftover potato from making Potato Skins. Don't throw that goodness away!
I cooked the kale in the soup, towards the end of cooking, for about 5-7 minutes. I thinly sliced it beforehand. If there's one thing the hubby hates, it's a big chewy mouthful of kale in his soup. Thin slicing is the way to go.
Since I was using leftover chicken, I threw it in last. It only needs to warm for a couple of minutes.
After the soup was finished, I removed it from heat and stirred in about 1/3 cup of heavy cream and some fresh parsley.
And somewhere in all that process, I toasted a baguette. I always serve bread with soup. I'm not sure I'd even want to eat a bowl of soup without bread anymore!
Sure to warm you right up after a cold winter's day!
And just like that, we are to another weekend. After a long cold spell here in Kentucky, this weekend is supposed to be warm. As in, it's supposed to be 67º today. Seeing how we still have a couple of inches of snow on the ground, I find this insane! At 67º, all this snow should be gone by tomorrow. The chihuahuas are going to be thrilled, as they are pretty tired of going potty in the same 10 x 10 square we've kept uncovered of snow. One of my weekend goals is to get them as much outdoor time as they can handle. I know we aren't done with snow for the year, so we'll be taking advantage of this nice bout of warm weather. I need to tire out that 4-lb puppy who's craziness abounds with enough energy for a dog 10 times his size. I'll admit though, I do love the pounding of little feet racing up and down our hallways :-)
Puppies are the best, aren't they?
That's it for me this week, have a great weekend everyone!
Ingredients (serves 6-8):
1 tbsp olive oil
1 small onion, chopped
2 stalks celery, diced
1 1/2 tsp dried basil
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp dried thyme
1 bay leaf
salt and pepper
6 cups Chicken Broth
2 baked potatoes, peeled and roughly smashed
2 cups kale, ribs removed, thinly sliced
2 cups chicken, cooked, chopped or shredded
1/3 cup heavy cream
2 tbsp parsley, minced
1. Heat olive oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. When hot, add onion and celery. Sauté for 5-7 minutes, or until softened.
2. Add basil, oregano, thyme, and bay leaf to the pan. Stir to combine. Add salt and pepper to taste. Sauté for 30 seconds.
3. Add chicken broth to pot. Bring to a boil, then lower heat to a simmer. Simmer for 20 minutes.
4. Add potatoes and kale to the pot. Cook, stirring often, for 5 minutes or until kale is tender. Add chicken to the pot. Cook until chicken is heated, 2-3 minutes.
5. Remove pot from heat. Stir in heavy cream and parsley. Add additional cream to taste, if desired. Add salt and pepper to taste. Ladle into bowls and serve with crusty bread.
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