I’ve been busy with my job hunting and preparing for Valentine’s Day so I haven’t posted much as of late. I did a couple of cute desserts that I’ll post later, but in the meantime here’s a lovely soup to warm your soul this winter. We definitely need it here in Ottawa after the record breaking snowfall we received yesterday. 47 centimetres! (18 1/2 inches) The soup was inspired by DamnDelicious.com. Their site was down so I used just the ingredients as listed on Pinterest, with some tweaks to suit my tastes. I fried up 4 slices of bacon to render the grease and use the meat as a garnish. I also added a couple of potatoes. It turned out wonderfully! My guy Steve is a mushroom fanatic and his favourite soups are chowders so he wolfed this down. It’s also super simple and quick to make, especially if you have leftovers from a Sunday roast chicken. You could also use leftover turkey from a holiday celebration, or use precooked like I did. I hope you enjoy it as much as we did. 🙂
Creamy Chicken and Mushroom Soup
4 slices of bacon
1 large package of precooked chicken breast or approx 2 cups of chopped rotisserie chicken
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
3 cloves garlic, minced
8 ounces cremini mushrooms, thinly sliced (I used a can of mushrooms)
1 onion, diced
2 handfuls of thinly sliced carrots (like the packaged kind for coleslaw)
2 stalks celery, diced
2 potatoes, diced
2-3 pinches or so of dried thyme
2 Tbsp all-purpose flour
4 cups chicken stock (1 litre low sodium prepackaged chicken stock)
1 bay leaf
1/2 cup half and half, or more, as needed*
1 tsp dried parsley leaves
2 or 3 pinches of dried rosemary
Cook the bacon to your liking in a large pot or dutch oven or medium heat. Remove from pot and crumble. Pour off all but one tablespoon of the bacon fat. Add butter, garlic, mushrooms, onion, carrots and celery to the fat in the pot. Cook, stirring occasionally, until tender, about 3-4 minutes. Stir in thyme until fragrant, about 1 minute.
Whisk in chicken stock, bay leaf and chicken thighs, and cook, whisking constantly, until slightly thickened, about 4-5 minutes.Whisk together 2 Tbsp flour and 2 Tbsp of the half and half to make a slurry. Stir in remaining half and half into soup until heated through, about 1-2 minutes; season with salt and pepper, to taste. Bring to a boil and add the slurry to thicken the soup. If the soup is too thick, add more half and half as needed until desired consistency is reached. Serve immediately, garnished with parsley and rosemary, if desired.
Notes: *Half and half is equal parts of whole milk and cream. For 1 cup half and half, you can substitute 3/4 cup whole milk + 1/4 cup heavy cream or 2/3 cup skim or low-fat milk + 1/3 cup heavy cream.