Sunday, January 17, 2016

Chicken and Wild Rice Soup

It may come as a surprise to those enjoying a solid cold winter elsewhere, but we do get winter weather here in Hawaii.   It's in the low 70s (or gasp, the high 60s) at night, at sea level.   If you live upcountry, it's even cooler.     When I read all the cold weather, slow cooker recipes, I want to get in on the fun, even if I'm not wearing socks or sitting by the fireplace. 

I don't miss many restaurant chains from the mainland, but there are times where soup in a bread bowl from Panera would be the perfect meal.   This soup makes me think of sitting by the fireplace at the Panera in the DTC back in Colorado on cold winter day.         

What You Need

1 pound skinless, boneless chicken breasts,- two large ones will do it and frozen worked just fine
1 cup uncooked wild rice, I used Lundberg Wild Blend Rice experimenting from the bulk bin at the natural food store
2 cups, total, of chopped celery, carrot and onion
6 cups chicken broth
1 teaspoon poultry seasoning (or improv here with sage, thyme, rosemary, nutmeg, salt and pepper)
1/2 cup butter
3/4 cup flour
2 cups 2% milk (the original recipe called for whole, but I don't usually have that on hand...I did know that my normal choice of skim milk wouldn't make the soup as creamy as I'd like, so 2% was my personal soup compromise of the day)
3 tablespoons white wine
salt and pepper to taste

What You Do

Why I loved this recipe so much was that it really was easy.   Take the whole chicken breasts, rice, veggies, chicken broth and seasoning and put it in the slow cooker on low for 7-8 hours.    

Walk away.  Go to work, walk the dog, take a nap, hit the beach, read a good book, visit with your neighbors, or curl up by the fireplace.

Come back and use tongs to pull the chicken breasts from the pot.   Use two forks to shred them and then put the chicken back in the pot.  

In a medium saucepan, melt the butter.   Add the flour and let it bubble for a minute.   Add the milk, and whisk the mixture together.   Then add the wine (if you're drinking it at the same time, that's totally fine....especially if it's cold out).    Add this roux to the soup going in the slow cooker.   If you want to change the consistency of the soup, you can add additional milk at this time.    Let it cook a little longer so that it's all combined and full of hearty goodness, then dig in.  

Bonus if you have a bread bowl on hand.   

Recipe source:  This soup recipe comes from Pinch of Yum, one of my favorite food blogs to follow

Meanwhile in Maui

Friday night's sunset was glorious.  
If you're thinking that Hawaii is calling your name in 2016, come.

Other soups you might enjoy:

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