Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Hearty Chicken Soup and a Favorite New Cutting Board

 

Is it still cold where you live? Last year we saw the first Robin in our yard on March 6. That won't happen this year will all of the snow we still have on the ground! At least the days are longer as we head into Daylight Savings Time this weekend which will be a definite mental boost. 

Here is a creamy, satisfying chicken soup to warm your body and mind while the stubborn cold and snow remain. I first tasted this soup at a ski lodge many years ago and I worked on adapting the recipe over the years into one my family's best-loved soups.


The recipe is easily adapted using freshly poached chicken breast, rotisserie chicken or with a nice chunk of turkey breast in the freezer from Thanksgiving as I did this time.  Add whatever veggies you like or have on hand.  The key ingredients that should not be altered are the herbs which gives this thickened soup (or stew) it's distinctive flavor. I have used dried herbs but this year I am still using the herbs that I harvested and froze last fall.  Make it your family's favorite!

Now, about that favorite new cutting board!  My friend, Michael, from Michael's Wood Craft in South Carolina sent me this beautiful double-handled cutting board that he made in his work shop recently.  I love the design! The board is sanded to a lovely, satin-smooth finish.  Michael sends his own custom wood conditioner and care instructions with each cutting board that he makes to order. 


It's so pretty and shows the grain of the natural wood beautifully. I used one side for cutting the vegetables for my soup...


And will save the other side to use as a serving board for cheese and other appetizers.  I wiped the board with a damp, soft sponge, dried it thoroughly and gave it a thin coat of mineral oil after I used it.  Right now, it is staying on my kitchen counter to admire :)


If you need a new cutting board yourself or are in the market for a gift, such as an upcoming wedding or birthday, please take a look at the beautiful cutting boards on Michael's website.  Michael is also a wonderful cook and shares recipes on his blog also found on his website.   

Thank you again, Michael!   

Hearty Chicken Soup

~ A Savoring Time in the Kitchen Recipe
Printable Recipe

2-3 chicken breasts halves, poached and diced (may use rotisserie chicken)
1 large onion, diced
4 medium carrots, peeled and diced
4 stalks celery, diced
8-10 small red potatoes, washed and cut into 1/2 inch chunks (russets may be substituted)
5 sprigs fresh thyme  (can substitute 1 tsp dried)
1 tablespoon fresh basil (can substitute 1 tsp dried)
¼ cup fresh parsley, chopped
1 tsp ground pepper
4 tablespoons butter
½ cup all-purpose flour (may use cornstarch or arrowroot if gluten-free is preferred)
1 32-oz container unsalted chicken stock (I like Kitchen Basics brand) - or homemade stock
1 14-oz can of diced tomatoes, drained (I like Pomi brand)
1 cup frozen peas - thawed and drained
Water - as needed
1-2 teaspoons "Better than Bouillon" Chicken Soup Base, optional

Poach 3 chicken breasts in a large saute pan with a little water until done – about 15 minutes. I like to add 1 or 2 bay leaves to the poaching liquid.  Cool until safe to handle and cut into small squares. You may also use rotisserie chicken breasts or cooked turkey breast. 

In large stock pot, over medium heat, melt the butter.  Add the diced onion, carrots, celery and potatoes. Cook, stirring often, until vegetables (especially potatoes and carrots) are just barely tender when pierced with a fork. I place a cover loosely over the pot while cooking.

When the vegetables are just barely tender,  toss the flour over the vegetables and stir in. Add the chicken stock all at once and keep cooking and stirring occasionally until the broth is thickened.  Add more stock or water to make the broth thinner, if needed. 

Add all of the seasonings, drained tomatoes, peas and cut-up chicken. Add chicken soup base if a richer taste is desired. Cook until heated through and serve.
Options: 
  • Add 1 or 2 chipotle chilis and crushed tortillas for a Southwest flavor
  • Replace the potatoes with cannelini beans - add the beans at the end when adding the tomatoes (beans may be pureed and used as a thickener instead of flour also)
  • Use turkey breast or a rotisserie chicken instead of poached chicken breast

73 comments:

  1. Your soup would be very welcome in this Year of the Snow That Never Ends! And your new cutting board is gorgeous Susan, I wonder if he makes pigs? Enjoy:@)

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    1. Thanks, Lynn! Good questions - you'll have to ask him :)

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  2. Yum!! The soup sounds/looks wonderful and perfect for this kind of weather. Thanks for sharing the recipe. Love the cutting board.

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  3. Good evening Susan! First let me say your chicken soup looks delicious! Your recipe is much different than mine so I printed your recipe and plan to give it a try! :-)

    What a wonderful post and beautiful pictures of the board! Thank you so much for including me and my work with links to my site in your post. I appreciate that very much and I am grateful. But also important, I am so glad that you love the board! Glad to see that you are already using it! You took some really beautiful pictures, I love all the pictures but the one with the cutting board on your glass table with the wine, glasses, cheese, crackers, wow!! What an inviting picture!

    thank you again so much!
    Michael

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  4. I'm a little bit tired of snow right now, but missing two days of school this week because of it kind of makes it okay. :) The soup looks really good, and it looks like there's still plenty of soup weather ahead! That's a gorgeous cutting board. :)

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    1. Thank you! I hope you don't have too many snow days to make up :(

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  5. lovely soup and sorry the snow persists

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    1. Thanks, Rebecca. It is really starting to get to people in the Midwest!

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  6. Oh lala my post slipped away..literally..as I zoomed to admire all:-)
    The board is gorgeous Michael and Susan and it suits you to a T Susan..I agree beautiful shots:-)
    Have never made chicken soup with tomatoes..must try..
    Still very cold here and lots of snow..
    C'est la vie..I'm OK with it all:-)

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    1. You have such an great attitude about winter :)

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  7. Yes, it is still cold here...I noticed robins a few weeks ago, though. The soup looks delicious, Susan. Love the shape of your new cutting/serving board.

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    1. The freeze level is still so deep here I don't think there would be a worm to be found :)

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  8. Looks delish! I love soups. Beautiful board!

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  9. Still snowing? O my..when is that going to end?!
    The soup looks hearty, warming...and DELICIOUS! Love your cutting board, Susan.

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  10. What a superb post! The soup looks truly good… I am a lover of different type of cuisine and searching from internet and other sources. Thanks for share and keep it up.Getting a more new recipes and cooking tips visit now

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  11. Soup is always welcome at my house no matter what the season. Love your new cutting board and it is so pretty as a cheeseboard. Great tip about the mineral oil too. I have a new, well it was new a year ago and I only use it for display for fear of destroying it. I will definitely get some oil.
    Sam

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    1. Just be sure to get the food grade mineral oil. I found mine at Walgreens.

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  12. Michael has some beautiful boards! This soup looks pretty fantastic too. Yum! We have robins in the yard, along with piles of snow :(

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  13. To be honest, we eat and enjoy soup year around--but, most especially now. It has been a long, cold and soup sort of winter! Your hearty chicken soup looks delicious!! The board is perfect to enjoy chopping vegetables on and a winner as a cheese server.

    Best,
    Bonnie

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    1. Thank you, Bonnie. Soup is so good for you and helps satisfy without a lot of calories.

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  14. Susan, Your photography is enviable. Makes me want to try harder. I also love your soup recipe and the ease in making it. I plan on visiting Michael's site next; beautiful cutting board. I also read your previous post on salmon cakes. Thank you for reminding me of this great Ina recipe. We have company coming next week and now I know what I will serve on one of the nights they are here.

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    1. Thank you, Penny! I hope you enjoy the salmon cakes - we certainly did.

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  15. Sue, your soup is fantastic! We love soup all year round, even though my husband thinks differently during the summer months. But, its an easy meal to put on the table- as you know. Michael has beautiful boards and your display is stunning! Also, I have to make your salmon cakes soon, I am glad to see them again, since I have all the ingredients - it will be easy! Have a great day!

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    1. My husband shares the same opinion about soup in warm weather as yours :). Thanks so much!

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  16. This is such a beautiful soup Susan! Time here changes the last weekend of March and I can't wait! Winter has been very hard on you over there. Here was totally the opposite. A very mild winter and hopefully spring will start soon!

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    1. Thank you! You are so lucky to be enjoying nice weather, Katerina!

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  17. I suddenly realized I forgot to make chicken soup this year! I love your photos and the soup! the cutting board ain't bad either, nice to help out a fellow artist of wood, love carpenters!

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  18. This chicken soup looks delicious Susan...such a hearty and comforting soup...even for us here in California. Yes, indeed a nice cutting board!
    Hope you are enjoying your week :D

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    1. Thank you, Julianna. Southern California has had such beautiful weather this winter!

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  19. That is a gorgeous cutting board, sturdy but of nice design :D
    Lovely chicken soup as well, I bet it warms you up nicely!

    Cheers
    Choc Chip Uru

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  20. The soup looks really rich and hardy - I like all of the goodies. I believe I might hate to put a knife mark on that pretty board.

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  21. What a lovely soup! It looks so thick and yummy for chicken.
    I agree, it would be hard to use that board for cutting. I might just use it for serving and for photos, but you have a clever idea to use one side for cutting and one side for serving.
    Wow, I can't believe how many Irish dishes you have on your sidebar! I am impressed!

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    1. Thank you, Jacqueline! After looking at my sidebar again, I've decided to make the potato pancake for our dinner tonight :)

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  22. Se ve absolutamente deliciosa y contundente es mi sopa preferida,abrazos.

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  23. This soup look stunning and delicious! And love your cutting board and hope Susan the spring arrive soon!!

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    1. Thank you, Gloria! Hopefully we will get a slight warm up this weekend and it will melt some of the thick snow blanket I see outside .

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  24. We sure can use a hearty, delicious soup on a day like today.Also your friends boards look beautiful. We would all be privileged to own one.

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  25. In Trieste no wind "Bora",a little cold but so rainy, damp and gray !Adelicious soup that my family would love !Sunday, March 30 will begin Daylight Saving Time in Italy, I can not wait! A warm hug

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    1. Thank you, Chiara! I think I would rather have sunny and cold than rainy and gloomy.

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  26. I love your soup but I love that cutting board ever more. It's beautiful. Thanks for sharing his information.

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    1. Thank you, Lea Ann - Michael does beautiful work.

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  27. Love the soup AND the cutting board! Thanks for the link, Susan.

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  28. Now that is one pretty cutting board. That last picture needs to be in a frame. It's that perfect.

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  29. Hey, very nice site. I came across this on Google, and I am stoked that I did. I will definitely be coming back

    here more often. Wish I could add to the conversation and bring a bit more to the table,but am just taking in as

    much info as I can at the moment. Thanks for sharing.

    mango drinks manufacturers

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  30. I am currently feeling like I'll never get warm...though this soup will surely help!

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  31. Your chicken soup looks really delicious! I would enjoy it even in our super hot weather right now!
    And I like the cutting board! Lovely!

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  32. I wish I could have a good chopping board like this too, which is functional and stylish at the same time! I loved this soup: so hearty!

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  33. Still soup weather here! Hoping Spring is not too far away. Chicken soup is perfect anytime of year. WOW, what a beautiful cutting board. It's so pretty, I'd be reluctant to use it but it looks like it cleaned up nicely. Take care!

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  34. We love a hearty soup like this, especially on cold, rainy days that are so common here this time of year. Your cutting board is beautiful, Susan. I especially like the double handles. It would make a lovely gift for a special person, and for me as well.

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  35. Sounds really delicious, Susan - and I never thought of making chicken soup this way. I always have made it from the bones, by scratch. Yet, I often have lots of homemade frozen stock in the freezer and this recipe would be perfect for that hearty homemade chicken soup.
    YUM
    Valerie

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  36. This soup looks and sounds absolutely amazing. Thank you for sharing. I will be trying this very soon. I have often tried your shared recipes and have always thought each and every one a keeper. I am still in a limbo situation with my own blog, not really liking word press but still can't post pics on BlogSpot.com.????? I am still enjoying though visiting some of my most favorite blogs and yours, I ALWAYS try your recipes. They are top notch, THANKS!!!!!

    Carolyn

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  37. Such a wonderful chicken soup Susan! We could eat this the whole year around. What a beautiful cutting board and just perfect to serve a nice cheese spread or other little bites on. Thank you for the link:)
    Cheers,
    J&C

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  38. Very hearty and delicious chicken soup. Like the board too. I've been on Michael's site before :) ela

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  39. I just made a big pot of soup with a 5 lb chicken. We will be eating it for days. I ahve never had potatoes in chicken soup, very interesting.
    Your board is beautiful!

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  40. Forgot to say how delicious the soup looks!

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  41. An absolutely beautifully carfted cutting board. Michael does really nice work.

    I am sending warm weather thought syour way. This winter has been brutal and it is time to see some green and welcome the robins into the yard.

    Velva

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  42. This soup looks hearty and comforting and full of flavor. I love a nice cutting board and this one looks so versatile. Thanks for sharing the recipe and website. I will be sure to check it out.

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  43. what a lovely and comfoting dish!!!
    ps: don't be ridiculous, i guess it's all the secret of food photography enthusiast who only use one side of our fancy cutting board, LoL

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  44. I like the way you photographed the soup on the first photo. Is the white board just for photo shoots? :-) the cutting board is gorgeous!

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  45. Your soup looks so good…especially on a day when we are going to be getting more snow. :)

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  46. Your soup looks so delicious. Even though it is warming up here a bit, I'm always good for a great bowl of chicken soup! I need to find out where the artisan is in SC that made that beautiful cutting board too! Thanks for the tip Susan!

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