14
Dec
09

Tastes just like Chicken Soup!


Winter staple gone vegetarian

This time of year always means two things to me:  Sweater weather and soup.  As I get older, the pretty pull over sweaters of my youth have given way to cardigans (for fast removal during those pesky hot flashes!) and my soups have become more complex.

I have always loved soup.  I could eat it for breakfast, lunch or dinner.  When I was a kid, I would go on soup jags.  Everyday, for weeks, I would eat either chicken noodle or tomato soup for lunch.  Of course, these soups all came from the familiar red and white can and you just added a can of water.  That was how soup was made in our house.  Being a kid and never having tasted real home made soup, I didn’t know what I was missing. 

When I grew up (stop laughing, those of you who actually know me!) and started cooking for my own family, I made several attempts at home made soup.  I will admit that a lot of them were bland and lacked flavor.  Soup stocks were still a mystery to me so suffice it to say, my soups were pretty watery. 

Years fly by (calendar pages fly by in rapid succession, like in the movies) and my love affair with soup has blossomed into a comfortable relationship.  I can whip up a soup in no time flat.  Good soup. Hearty soup with lots of flavor and enough heat to coax the chill out of your bones at this very cold time of the year.  When I owned Naked Baker I made two types of soup every day.  I made my own vegetable stock.  My customers loved my soups.  I only wish that this recipe I am about to share with you had existed when I had my little shop.  I know it would have been a favorite. 

Six years ago I cut a recipe out of the food section of the newspaper.  It was for a chicken soup.  Now, being a vegetarian, I would never make chicken soup.  But I love to do a redux of nonvegetarian dishes and make them veggie friendly.  This soup became an instant hit with family and friends.  It is velvety in texture, chunky with bits of goodness and pure comfort food. 

TASTES JUST LIKE CHICKEN SOUP! 

  

8 OZ CHICKENLESS STRIPS (Trader Joe’s or Morningstar Farms) 

2 TABLESPOONS OLIVE OIL 

3 TABLESPOONS BUTTER 

1 MEDIUM ONION, FINELY CHOPPED 

3 STALKS CELERY, FINELY CHOPPED 

2 LARGE CLOVES OF GARLIC, MINCED 

1 TEASPOON DRIED TARRAGON 

1 TEASPOON DRIED OREGANO 

2 TEASPOONS HUNGARIAN PAPRIKA 

2 TEASPOONS KOSHER SALT 

½ TEASPOON FRESH GROUND PEPPER 

½ CUP PLUS 2 TABLESPOONS FLOUR 

8 CUPS NO CHICKEN BROTH (Imagine Brand) 

1 14.5 OZ DICED TOMATO IN JUICE 

¾ CUP HEAVY CREAM 

2 CUPS THINLY SLICED FRESH SPINACH 

Hot sauce to taste!

 Cut chickenless strips into bite size pieces.  Heat a small amount of oil in sauce pan.  Add chickenless pieces to hot oil, sprinkle with salt, poultry seasoning and dried garlic or garlic powder to taste.  Saute until pieces are lightly browned, about 3 – 4 minutes.  Remove from heat and set aside. 

Heat olive oil in large soup pot over medium high heat.  Add butter and melt.  Sauté onion and celery until the onions are translucent, about 7 – 8 minutes.  Add the garlic, tarragon, oregano, paprika, salt and pepper.  Cook, stirring, for 3 or 4 minutes.  Add the flour and stir until well combined.  Slowly whisk in the no chicken broth and bring to a boil.  Add the tomatoes, with juice, and cream.  Reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes.  Add the “chicken” pieces and simmer another 10 minutes.  Stir in the spinach just before serving.  Serve with extra hot sauce to help warm you up!

 

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2 Responses to “Tastes just like Chicken Soup!”


  1. December 16, 2009 at 5:28 am

    Oh my gosh!!!!!!!! Thank you thank you thank you!! It was soooooo delicious!! Thankyou(=

    • December 16, 2009 at 1:08 pm

      So glad you enjoyed the soup, Colby. I’m happy to share anytime, especially with fellow vegetarians. And now I have the link to your blog so I can check up on you!


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