Today we went down to make lunch and we had two chicken breasts that we had baked yesterday. I try and buy the ones with the bone in and the skin on so that they have a bit more flavor than the ubiquitous boneless skinless chicken breast.
Which reminds me of the time our middle son, as a toddler, asked me at dinner “Mom, how did they get the bones in this chicken?” Do you think we’d had boneless skinless too much? Eeek! We burst out laughing. Those were the days when chicken fat was evil. Not any more.
My husband looked at me and said “it’s too cold to have chicken salad” which is our go-to lunch for cooked chicken. He asked if there was anyway we could have soup, and since I love making soup, we gave it a try. He is my sous chef and chopper, so I am lucky!
This recipe literally came out of my head and my fridge but it turned out so good I thought I would post it. It’s full of vitamins and minerals and helps fill you up and provides comfort during these ridiculously cold winter days.
Serves about 4.
- Two cooked chicken breasts, shredded or cubed, your preference.
- One small bulb of fennel, diced into 1 inch pieces
- One large carrot sliced, and if really large circles, slice the rounds in half
- About eight basil leaves sliced thin
- 2 teaspoons ground thyme or you can throw in fresh thyme
- 2 teaspoons dill weed
- Two cloves garlic
- One red yellow or orange pepper diced
- one onion diced
- 4 cups chicken broth
- 1-2 bouillon cubes or “Better than Bouillon” brand extract
- optional: add a cooked diced potato, cubed pre-cooked squash or sweet potato, parsnips, spinach, swiss chard, etc. I added a potato and 1/3 bag of organic cubed squash that was frozen
- salt and pepper to taste
Take the chicken broth and place in pan on medium/low heat. Add the carrots and the fennel. Simmer them while you get the rest ready:
Take a saute pan and add 2 T of avocado or ghee. Add the diced onion and peppers, cook until they are wilted and the onion translucent, probably 5 minutes. Add the 2 garlic cloves and cook under medium heat for only one minute more. Add this mixture to the broth, and add the spices (dill, basil, thyme). Add any frozen squash or frozen veggies now. Bring back to a simmer.
Now taste the broth after a few minutes. If it is boring, add a pinch of salt. If it feels not robust enough, this is when you add a ½ bouillon cube or a teaspoon of bouillon/broth extract like Better Than Bouillon. I keep these in my frig. They come in handy.
Shred or dice your chicken. Now, go to your pot. Check to see the carrots and other veggies are soft. If they are, it is time to add the chicken, and cooked potato. You add them at the end (you don’t want potato to get mushy or the chicken to boil, it will get rubbery).
Serve and Enjoy!