Thursday, September 27, 2012

If I had a Twitter Part 1

I refuse to use Twitter, but some things I want to type I feel silly putting up as a Facebook status, which is exactly what Twitter seems to be all about.  So welcome to my fake Twitter account!

- I've decided that I am going to put on hair and make up this weekend and make someone take pictures of me like a movie star being photographed in her own home.  Damn you, Gwyneth Paltrow, you do this to me!!!

Sunday, September 23, 2012

My favorite soup for my favorite season

So, it's officially autumn!  To celebrate the season changing I have finally decided to blog a recipe I make a lot.  It's quite possibly perfect.  Everything about this soup sings.  I found the recipe back when I was making recipe cards for myself a few years ago, and the recipe card has someone's scribbling with a black Sharpie all over it *ahem, Elora* and I keep it tucked in my pretty little recipe journal. 

There are items in the soups that I don't use for anything BUT this soup, but every item is important, so please don't discount the sherry or the tarragon if they aren't normal pantry items for you.  Buy them once, and you will be surprised how many times you make this soup and use those 2 items.  Plus, I will note, it's a pretty light recipe (you can find the printable recipe here, along with nutritional information), using evaporated milk for the creaminess instead of heavy cream.  It is also not labor or time intensive, so I can make it on a week night easy.  And it's even better as leftovers.

*Disclaimer* I won't be giving detailed instructions at every step, just offering photographic evidence that this soup is easy to make.  Hopefully the photography and my hilarious commentary will have you clicking the recipe and making this soup very soon (how about tonight?!?!).  So pull up the recipe and read along with the steps if you want to know exact quantities and cooking times.  Please and thank you.  And you're welcome.

So, let's start with a chicken.  You can easily buy a rotisserie chicken at whatever grocery store you frequent and break that down for the chicken in this soup.  I just so happened to have a couple frozen whole chicken so I thawed one out and followed this recipe a fellow blogger had posted.   The key to perfect crock pot chicken is adding no water, and seasoning with enough salt.

I set my light timer to have the chicken start cooking as soon as I left the house, and it turned off at 5 so when I got home at 6 it was still warm but not so hot I couldn't use my hands to pull it apart.  It broke down like a dream, and was so yummy I ate the wings piece by delicious piece.

First step: get some olive oil going in the bottom of the pot, 1 tablespoon or so.  I am using my Christmas present dutch oven that I lurve so much to cook with.  My friend Laura just got herself a deal on an enameled dutch oven yesterday.  I hope she loves hers as much as I love mine.

Next up, veggies!  Celery, carrots, red onion.  Don't they look colorful all together like that!

Mushrooms and garlic are very necessary.

So, the kids are in the pool.  Let 'em sit for a few, they will sweat out a key ingredient to your next step.

I forgot to take a picture of the thyme (one could say I didn't give myself enough THYME, BAHAHAHAHAHA, kitchen humor).  But this is the tarragon, it has a licorice/anise smell and flavor, but in this soup you won't be wondering who spiked it with Good & Plenty's with only a half teaspoon.

This is the sweat from the veggies.   This is what you're going for, hidden behind the steam in this picture.

Flour is joining the party.  You'll add the flour, tarragon, and thyme at the same time.

Cook the coated mixture for a minute or so, get that floury taste out of there.

This has about 6 cups of water added, along with 4 teaspoons of chicken bouillon/chicken base.

A quarter cup of sherry, artfully shot from above.

Bubbly evaporated milk.

Let this simmer for a bit whilst you prepare your chicken and your rice.

You could make wild rice that takes 50 minutes, or 25 minutes....

Or 90 seconds.  I will go with 90 seconds, thank you very much.

This chicken came apart like a pair of dollar store panties.  I used the thigh meat and a whole breast, chopped, in the soup, and sent a drumstick in Elora's lunch box the next day.

Chicken and rice are lurking beneath the surface of this soup. 

Serve this up with some bread for dipping.  You will want every last drop of this deliciousness, I assure you.

I consider any recipe that results in clean plates/bowls a rousing success.  This soup is Colter B. Tested, Colter B. Approved.

So there you go, a wonderful fall soup, easy as pie.  Try it out and let me know what you think!