Category Archives: Soups


Lame Cop Out

This is like a lamer version of those sit com clip shows.  You know, the ones where they string together a bunch of old episodes so they don’t have to actually write/shoot a new episode.  This is lamer because I’m not even using my own clips. 

**(Obviously, Simpsons episodes would be exempt from my comments)

Anyway, good food is good food, no matter who’s recipe it is.  Everyone who’s read this blog (all three of you) knows that I like to take recipes and change them around and make them more agreeable to my family.  Sometimes, though I come across such good ones that I can’t bring myself to mess with them.

One of the MANY food blogs that I read is Prudence Pennywise.  Before anyone says anything, YES, I think she lives in Utah, and NO I didn’t know that when I started reading it.  She posts some very interesting recipes, though, one of which is the Summer Thyme Corn Chowder that is the subject of this post.  It was OUTSTANDING.  My wife hates almost all soup (I know, I love her anyway though), and she really liked it also.

Another food blogger that I like a lot is Smitten Kitchen.  Her recipes are great, she has an entertaining writing style and I am terminally jealous of her photography skills.  She posted a recipe for Cheese Straws back in June that was delicious and paired up very nicely with the soup. 

Check them out, try them and as always, let me know what you think!

It’s Not Really White….And It Looks a Little Odd…

I’m no chili snob.  I’ve never been to Santa Fe or really checked out any “authentic” chilis, but I know what I like and don’t like.  I’ve been to enough pot luck type things (which is just a buffet that I won’t get a bill for…) that I have an idea of what OTHER people think chili is…  We’ll just say that this one is nothing like those.

I got the base recipe from Cook’s Illustrated Magazine, who for some reason saw fit to call it White Chicken Chili, which is what I in turn called it whenever I served it.  It is NOT white.  It is a beautiful vibrant green, which takes a little explaining to less adventurous folks.

white_chili

Believe me, this one is a keeper.  You can make it spicy or not, you can make it thicker or thinner, and even the most hesitant are inevitably won over after trying it.

Green Chili with Chicken and White Beans (it doesn’t exactly flow off the tongue…)

  • 3 medium bone-in, skin on chicken breasts
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 3 Poblano chilis, stemmed, seeded and cut in large pieces
  • 3 Anaheim chilis, stemmed, seeded and cut in large pieces
  • 2 Jalapenos
  • 1 large onion, cut in large pieces
  • 6 cloves garlic, minced or pressed finely
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground coriander
  • 3 cups chicken stock
  • 4 cans cannellini beans, drained and rinsed (I like these a lot, but if you’re not a fan you can use less)
  • 3 tablespoons fresh lime juice (those plastic limes with juice in them do NOT count – seriously don’t even try it)
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro (some people don’t like this either, but it really adds a fresh, bright flavor and complements everything else really well)
  • Kosher salt

Heat oil in large dutch oven or stock pot over medium high heat.  Sprinkle the chicken breasts liberally with salt, then put in oil skin side down.  Cook for 4 or 5 minutes, then flip and cook for 2 or 3 more.  The chicken won’t be all the way cooked at this point, but remove the pieces with tongs and set aside.

While the chicken is cooking, remove the stem, seeds, and ribs from the jalapenos.  If you like it spicier, you can leave the ribs.  If you don’t like spicy, you can drop back to just one.  I wouldn’t leave it out entirely, as it does bring flavor to the party, but it’s your dish.  Mince the jalapenos very fine and set aside. Take the other chilis and onions and put them in the bowl of a food processor (you can do it in multiple batches if you need to).  You don’t want to completely puree them, but you want them broken up.  It should take 20 or 30 seconds, depending on your machine.

Once the chicken pieces are out of your pan, drain off all but a tablespoon or so of fat, then put the chili puree in the pan along with the garlic, cumin, coriander and about 1/4 teaspoon of salt.  Cook them over medium heat until the vegetables soften, 8 to 10 minutes.

Take about a cup of the vegetable mixture, 1 cup of chicken stock, and about 2 cups of beans and put them all in the food processor.  If you like it a little on the thicker side, use more beans.  If you like it thinner, use less.  Process all of that until smooth, then return it to the pot with your chicken pieces and any juices that have collected on the plate.  Add the rest of the stock and then bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer covered for 20 to 30 minutes. (Basically we’re waiting for that chicken to finish cooking).

Take the chicken out an let cool on a plate.  Add the remaining beans to the pot and cook until they are hot, 10 minutes or so.  The chicken will be insanely hot when it comes out, in addition to being covered with an undetermined amount of jalapeno oils, so use caution.  Pull the skin off and then shred the chicken into bite sized pieces.  Add chicken to the pot, then lime juice and cilantro.  Stir them together and serve with fresh tortilla chips, more limes (which can tone down the spice if needed, as well as adding a bright finish to the dish), etc. etc.  Use your imagination.  Go on, you don’t want me to think of everything for you, do you? 

Chicken Soup

It’s kind of more like a stew than a soup, but it takes a little less than an hour to make, so it’s not really stewed per se (and I REFUSE to use the word stoup!!  I’m talking to you, Rachael Ray)…nonetheless, it’s REALLY good.

This is loosely based on Ina Garten’s Chicken Stew with Biscuits Recipe, but I never have time to roast the chicken, let alone make biscuits on a week night.

I feel I need to throw out this disclaimer:

I AM NOT A PHOTOGRAPHER!  I have a new appreciation for people who take pictures of food who can actually make it look good. 

IMG_0349

Quick Chicken Stew

  • 1 1/2 – 2 lbs boneless skinless chicken breast, cubed
  • 12 tbsp butter
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 4 medium carrots, diced
  • 3/4 cup flour
  • 6 or 7 cups of chicken hot stock (heat in microwave or on stove)
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 4 medium potatoes, diced
  • 1/2 cup frozen peas

In large pot or dutch oven, melt butter over medium high heat.  Add carrots and onions, and cook until the onions are translucent, 6-8 minutes.  Add chicken and simmer until pink is gone.

Add 3/4 cup flour and stir vigorously.  It will glop together, but don’t panic.  Cook until the bottom of the pan browns slightly.  Add the stock and stir until smooth.  You can add more or less stock depending on how thick you want it.

Stir in cream, salt and pepper.  (I always taste it at this point, it’s fantastic).  Add potatoes and bring to boil.  Simmer until cooked, 15-20 minutes more, stirring occasionally.  When potatoes are easily pierced with knife, add peas and cook 2-3 minutes longer.