Saturday, January 9, 2010

two soups

I love soup...and I love making it, especially when it's cold outside. Currently, I have two favorites....Chicken Soup and Broccoli Soup. They are both super easy to make, last for days, freeze well, and taste delicious.

Chicken Soup
{I make it the way I was taught by my mom}

I buy 2 whole chicken breasts, skin on...bones in. This is a lot of white meat.

In a large stock pot I put: whole chicken breasts, 2 sweet onions (vidalia) cut into quarters, 4-6 celery stalks cut into thirds, 4-6 large carrots, cut into thirds and a huge handful of parsley. Just roughly cut it all up and throw it in. Next, I put in just enough cold water so that everything is submerged. Add a few teaspoons of kosher salt, and bring to a boil.
I boil it rapidly for about 10 minutes, skimming off any fat/froth. Turn down to a low simmer for 1-2 hours with lid on, but cracked. Then I turn it off, put the lid completely on and let it sit for at least an hour....more if I have time. After it sits for a while I take out all the chicken and veggies and strain the stock. I shred the chicken and put it back in the stock. (I toss all the rest...not into soggy onions and celery.) I add at least a 1/2 bag of baby carrots and once again bring it to a rolling boil for about 15 minutes or until the carrots are tender. DONE.
I make pastina in a separate pot and add it as I eat my soup...I don't like pasta-bogged mushy soup. Freezes exceptionally well. Many times, I have so much chicken, I use about half of it for another meal.

Broccoli Soup
{Adapted from Apples for Jam by Tessa Kiros}

This soup is so tasty, super healthy (minus the milk/cheese) and goes great with grilled cheese.

I roughly cup up about 6 cups of broccoli (this is a lot), quarter a red onion, quarter about 3 Yukon Gold potatoes (skinned) and throw them into a large stock pot. I add a few cups of chicken stock, a few teaspoons of kosher salt and then add cold water to cover the ingredients. Bring it to a boil, then turn down and simmer on low for at least an hour. Take off the heat. Let it cool slightly. If I notice that I have tons of liquid I pour a little off and reserve it. In small batches, run it through a food processor or blender until smooth. I add about a cup of whole milk or heavy cream when I blend the last batch. I pour it all into a large bowl as I'm working. Last, I pour it all back into my pot and reheat it and mix it well. If it is too thick, I'll add a little of the reserved stock...but rarely need to. Adding a little shredded cheese on top with salt and pepper tastes delicious.

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