Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Soup in the freezer...better than snowballs!

If I were a bear,
And a big bear too,
I shouldn't much care 
If it froze or snew.
I shouldn't much mind
If it snowed or friz;
I'd be all fur-lined 
With a coat like his.
A.A. Milne
Ok, so I'm not a bear. But this weekend when it snowed I didn't care. I knew I had four quarts of homemade soup in my freezer. Soup I didn't even have to make. Last Friday at work we had a Soup Swap Luncheon...We had soup galore to sample, plus all of the good stuff that goes along with it. Some of us brought quarts of frozen soup as well, which we swapped. I took four quarts of my Chicken and Rice with Mushroom soup and brought home Turkey Chili, Escarole Bean Soup, Spicy Red Lentil Chili and Roasted Corn Chowder with Chorizo.  (The Chicken Cheese Soup I sampled at the luncheon was good too, but it wasn't for swapping.) I'm good for a couple of snowstorms now. I have no photo of the soup I took to work, but here's the recipe:

Chicken, Rice and Mushroom Soup (printable recipe)

You'll need approximately 2 quarts of chicken broth or stock. You can use canned, boxed or homemade. If you're using boxed or canned, simmer it first (about 30 minutes) with:
2 cloves garlic
1 sliced onion
a few peppercorns
a coarsely chopped celery stalk
a coarsely chopped carrot
1/4 cup dry white wine (optional)
Strain out and discard solids.

To the seasoned broth add:
1 cup chopped, fresh mushrooms (Baby Bellas are good)
2 carrots, sliced
2 celery stalks, sliced
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/8 teaspoon white pepper (optional)
1 teaspoon dried basil
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
salt to taste
Bring to a boil, then add 1/2 cup brown rice. Reduce heat, cover and simmer until rice is tender. 
2 cups cooked chicken cut into small pieces
A couple of handfuls of spinach, cut into 1/4 inch strips
A handful of Italian parsley, chopped
Cook until chicken is heated through.

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