Sunday, November 11, 2007

Cream of chicken & rice soup

Kathy insisted I actually post something... so here's what I cooked last night. I drive Kathy crazy because I rarely follow a recipe to the me a recipe is a suggested starting point! lol I've made this particular recipe many times, and I change it just about every time (generally to use what we have on hand). So here's how it happened last night:

2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 cup chopped carrots (I pretty much dice mine)
1 cup chopped celery (diced, again for me)
1/2 cup leeks or onion (last night I used green onions, so we've used all three before)
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 tsp fresh thyme (I've used dried before, use what you have)
1/2 cup rice (we use Uncle Ben's converted rice, but wild rice would be good here)
32oz chicken stock
1 "tub" of mushrooms
1 Tbsp butter
1 Tbsp oilve oil
Salt & pepper to taste

2 Tbsp butter
3 Tbsp flour
1 to 1 1/2 cups half & half (I've used both cream & milk -- use what you have!)

First change last night was to pan fry the chicken (it is normally boiled). So, I took 1 Tbsp of butter and 1 Tbsp of olive oil and I pan fried the chicken. Reserve the chicken and throw in the carrots, celery, and onions/leeks. Cook for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the garlic and cook another minute or two. Add the rice, and stir to coat the rice. Add the stock and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer for about 45 minutes.

While it is simmering, cut the chicken into bite-size pieces. Add the chicken back to the pot at about the 30 minute mark, along with the mushrooms.

Near the 45 minute mark, in a saucepan melt the 2 Tbsp butter. Once it is popping hot, stir in the flour. Mix well, and then gradually add the half & half. You're making the cream part of the recipe, which will also act as a thickener.

Pour the cream mixture into the pot and stir to combine. Bring it back to a boil to thicken a bit, and that's it. Oh, don't forget the salt & pepper.

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