Spicy Smoked Chicken Chowder with Homemade Tortilla Chips
The boys went out for barbeque the other night and were a little overzealous in their ordering; they came home with almost two full uneaten smoked chicken quarters. (I have a feeling they filled up on hush puppies). The chicken had a great flavor, but didn’t seem that appetizing just reheated, so I decided to craft a soup around the leftover chicken. I thought the smokiness would be best accentuated in a chowder (I briefly toyed with the idea of a smoked chicken tortilla soup, but I like my traditional recipe too much to mess with it). I did, however, decide to make some homemade corn tortilla chips to accompany the chowder, and I garnished the chowder with a couple of avocado slices, but, honestly, the avocado didn’t add much to the already amazing flavor of the chowder. As is typical with a newly created recipe – I tweeked it as I went. I decided to add diced red pepper (because it was a bit of an afterthought, I sauteed it separately after I had cooked most of the other vegetables, so it is not shown in the photos). The photos also show both sweet and red onion being sauteed; I had 1/2 leftover of each, so I used both. You can adjust the spice in the recipe, but I thought the level of spice was perfect as is. If you can’t find smoked chicken (you can always go to your local barbeque joint), you can certainly substitute regular chicken (rotisserie would be fine), but if you can find smoked chicken, it really adds a whole additional level of flavor.
- 2-3 Cups Shredded Smoked Chicken (skin removed)
- 1 Large Sweet Onion
- 1 Sweet Red Pepper – chopped
- 1 Jalapeno Pepper -seeds and membrane removed; finely chopped
- 3 Cloves Fresh Garlic – finely chopped
- 2-3 Large Russet Potatoes – peeled and cut into 1/2 inch cubes
- 16 Oz. Frozen Corn (can substitute canned)
- 3 Plum Tomatoes – seeded and chopped
- 4 Chipotle (in Adobe sauce) Peppers – seeds removed and chopped.
- 1/4 Cup Olive Oil
- 1/4-1/3 Cup Flour
- 3 Cups Chicken Stock or Broth
- 2 cups Heavy Cream
- 1 Cup Monterey Jack cheese – shredded
- 1 Bay Leaf
- 2 Sprigs of Fresh thyme or 1/4 tsp. Dried Thyme
Fill a medium stock pot with enough water to sufficiently cover potatoes; bring to a boil and add potatoes. Cook potatoes until al dente (just becoming fork tender), about 5-7 minutes. Drain potatoes and run under cold water to stop cooking process; set aside. Heat olive oil in a medium saute pan over medium heat. Add onions, garlic, jalapeno and red pepper and saute until onion is translucent and peppers are tender.Add potatoes and flour and cook for an additional 5 minutes. Transfer mixture to a stock pot, add tomatoes, corn, chipotle peppers, shredded chicken, chicken stock, bay leaf and thyme. Heat to just below a boil, and add cream. When cream is heated, add shredded cheese. Garnish with avocado slice, if desired. Serve with homemade tortilla chips or good crusty bread.
Tuscan White Bean Soup with Smoked Turkey and Kale
This is a hearty but healthy soup. It’s been in the single digits here in Michigan, and this soup is a welcome warm-up. It’s great for dinner with a thick slice of crusty bread and a hunk of hard cheese (Parmesan, Romano or Asiago), or have it for lunch. I loaded the soup up with greens because I feel like our vegetable intake is always lacking in the winter, but you can certainly cut back on the amount of greens. I used dried beans that I soaked, but if you don’t have the time to soak the beans overnight, you can substitute canned beans. I used Great Northern Beans, but you can substitute any other type of white bean (including garbanzos), or use a combination of beans.
- 1 Medium Sweet Onion – chopped
- 2 Cloves Garlic – finely chopped
- 2 TBS. Olive Oil
- 48 oz. Dried Great Northern (White) Beans (or your favorite white bean)
- 1 Smoked Turkey Leg
- 1/2-1 tsp. Red Pepper Flakes
- 2 Cups Chopped Carrots (about 3 carrots)
- 1 Cup Celery – Chopped
- 64 Oz. Chicken Stock (about 12 Cups)
- 4-6 Cups Kale or Escarole (or other dark leafy green)
- Bay Leaf
- Salt and Pepper
- Fresh Thyme
Pour beans into a large bowl, cover with water and soak overnight. Drain the beans and set aside. Add the turkey leg to a medium stockpot, cover with water and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until turkey leg is cooked and tender – about 60-90 minutes. In a large stockpot, heat olive oil over medium heat, add onions and garlic and saute until tender. Add smoked turkey leg, beans, and chicken stock, and crushed red pepper flakes and cook until beans are al dente (about 15-20 minutes). Remove turkey leg from the pot, and, when cool enough to handle, pull the meat from the leg (discarding skin) and shred. Ladle out about 1 cup beans and 1/3 cup of cooking liquid and transfer to a blender or food processor. Puree bean mixture and return puree to stockpot. Add shredded turkey meat, carrots, celery, greens, and bay leaf and simmer until vegetables are tender. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Garnish with shredded Parmesan cheese and a sprig of fresh thyme.
Posted in Figure Friendly, Main Dishes, Recipes, Soup, Uncategorized
Tagged Bean Soup, Bean Soup with Kale and Smoked Turkey, Soup, Tuscan Bean Soup, Tuscan White Bean Soup, Tuscan White Bean Soup with Kale, White Bean Soup
Chipotle Pumpkin Soup
I served this at my Wicked Wine Tasting, but it would be a great option for Thanksgiving. Because the wine tasting was all about tasting wines paired with foods, I used really small (ramekin size) bowls. What I discovered, however, is that a small amount of soup is perfect because you can still serve other foods. Not that a big bowl of this soup wouldn’t be great, but I do like the idea of more of a tasting size portion of soup. I have a great creamy pumpkin soup recipe which is rich and decadent, but I wanted to do something a little different for this wine tasting. The chipotle flavor pairs so well with the pumpkin and there’s just the right amount of heat in the back of this soup. I served it out of a hollowed out pumpkin (which I put in a chafing dish and it actually stayed warm). This was very well received at the wine tasting and I promised to post the recipe. I apologize for the lack of photos – I had so much going on that I really didn’t have time to photograph during the cooking process, but this recipe is so straightforward that the photos aren’t necessary.
- 4-6 Cups of Chicken Stock (or broth)
- 45 oz. (3 small cans or 1 large and one small) Canned Pumpkin
- 1 Medium Sweet Onion – chopped
- 3 Cloves of Garlic – minced
- 2-3 Chipotle Peppers (canned in adobo) – chopped
- 1 tsp. Ground Cumin
- 2 tsp. Fresh Oregano (or 1 tsp. dried) – chopped
- 2 tsp. Olive Oil
- 2-3 tsp. Salt (to taste)
- 1 tsp. Fresh Ground Pepper
- Cayenne Pepper (optional)
Heat olive oil in a large stock pot over medium heat. Add the onions and cook until translucent. Add garlic, cumin, and chipotle peppers and saute for an additional minute. Add pumpkin and 4 Cups of chicken stock. Add oregano and salt and pepper and simmer for about 20 minutes. After about 20 minutes, transfer soup to a blender and blend until the onions and peppers are incorporated and the soup is smooth. Add more chicken stock if the stock is too thick. Season with additional salt and pepper as necessary and add cayenne pepper if more heat is desired. Serve with garnishes of creme fraiche and cilantro. If desired, serve out of a cleaned out pumpkin.
Chipotle Pumpkin Soup served out of a Pumpkin
Chicken Miso Soup
My kids and I love miso soup. It’s actually very easy to make, but you will need to go to an Asian (Japanese, if possible) market to find the two key ingredients (dashi and miso paste). Dashi is the normal base for miso soup – it’s made from fish and seawood- and it’s usually available in a quick cooking version. However, I’m on this diet that requires that I eat two servings of probiotics a day, and I can only eat so much Greek yogurt in a day, but, luckily, miso is a probiotic. While regular miso soup would be fine, I was on a quest to combine my probiotic serving with my lunch which includes a lean protein. So, I decided to add miso to chicken broth and add some cooked chicken and some greens. I have used leftover chicken (shredded), but for this batch I just poached some thin slices of chicken breast. Seaweed is usually what’s in miso soup, but I didn’t have any dried seaweed, so I added spinach (I have also used Swiss chard, which was great, so you can use any good “green”) . Miso paste comes in a variety of flavors (or colors); I think light miso is the best for soup. This recipe makes two lunch size servings.
- 4 Cups Chicken Broth
- 1/2 Cooked Boneless Skinless Chicken Breast*
- 2 TBS. Light Miso
- 1+ Cup Spinach or other “green”
- Approx. 3 TBS. Green Onion (green part only) -chopped
* Use leftover chicken (as long as it’s not overly seasoned) and shred it, or thinly slice (it’s easier if partially frozen) a chicken breast and add to boiling water to simply poach.INSTRUCTIONS:
In a medium sized saucepan, bring chicken broth to just below a boil. Add miso and stir until miso is comletely dissolved. Add greens and cook until wilted, add chicken. Add green onions and serve immediately.
Posted in Figure Friendly, Kid Favorites, Poultry, Recipes, Soup, Starters, Uncategorized
Tagged Chicken Miso, Chicken Miso Soup, Miso Soup, Miso Soup with Chicken, Miso with Chicken Broth