Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Golden Chicken & Orzo (sort of) Soup

For the past few months, I've subscribed to the Make It Tonight Easy Dinner Download from Fine Cooking. Once a week, they send out an email with 5 dinner recipes labeled Monday through Friday, along with shopping lists and recipes. What I especially like about the shopping lists is that they are coded for each day so that you don't have to wade through a great big long list and eliminate the ingredients for the dishes you aren't going to make that week. I usually make two or three of them per week when I'm in town and there are always great ideas for when I just don't know what I'm hungry for.
The download is in pretty color, but I always print it on my office computer, which is just a black and white.
It would have taken me less time to make, within the 30 minutes that most of the recipes take, except for two things: No rotisserie chicken on hand, so I poached two largish chicken breasts in chicken broth. Didn't want orzo so fired up rice in the rice cooker, which normally takes about an hour. Used 2 cups American jasmine rice to 3 cups water and a bit of sea salt.
While the chicken poached (even though they were large, it only took about 20 minutes), I minced up some celery and onions. Since I took a knife skills class at Sur la Table, that goes a lot faster than it used to!
A couple of tablespoons of olive oil went into the pot first -- my in-laws brought this back from a trip to Italy and I never get tired of looking at it.
After preheating the olive oil, the chopped celery and onions went into the pot, along with saffron and thyme. Sautéed that for a few minutes and then added the broth (I measured what was left in the skillet from poaching the chicken and then added more to make up the 8 cups called for) and brought it to a simmer.
The chicken went in next and the pot simmered until the music went off, signaling the rice cooker was done. Fluffed up the rice and added a cup of frozen corn to the soup pot along with fresh lemon juice, salt and pepper.
To serve, a scoop of rice went into each soup bowl and then the soup was ladled over it -- yum! Our weather has still been pretty chilly, so it's nice to have a hot bowl of soup to sit down to!

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