Fresh Food Thursday | Cheesy Chicken Tomato Basil Soup

Good morning!

Fall is quickly approaching, though down here in Virginia the weather isn’t turning fast enough for me. I worked from home all day yesterday and didn’t really step outside. I assumed that since it was chilly when I took the dog out at 7 a.m., that it would remain so all day. With this assumption, I transformed a summer dress into a fall fashion statement with my boots, scarf, and chunky sweater. When I stepped outside at 5 p.m. to get the mail, however, it was a brisk 85 degrees. 85 DEGREES!?! Where did that come from!?!

Like I said, the weather isn’t changing fast enough for me.

And since I had “crisp” in my mind before walking outside, I made and photographed a wonderful fall soup! Maybe some of my readers up north will benefit from this more so than than those of us in the heated South. Regardless of the weather, though, this soup is deliciously tasty!

Please note that this was not a quick-fix soup, like my Black Bean Soup, it took about an hour to make, and I left it on the stove (yes, I did the stove-top version, not the crock pot one) for about an hour or more afterwards. The crock-pot version is probably easier overall. I just didn’t have time to let it stew all day.

Cheesy Chicken Tomato Basil Soup
You’ll find the original recipe here, though I tweaked it a bit, so my changes are reflected below.

Ingredients
3T vegetable oil
1 cup finely diced carrots
1 cup finely diced onions
1 cup finely diced celery or 2 tsp celery flakes
1 Tbsp fresh oregano or 1 tsp dried
4 Tbsp fresh basil or 1T dried
4 cups chicken broth
3 cups diced tomatoes with juice (If you prefer canned, just use 2 cans)
1 lb. chicken, cooked and shredded or diced
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese
3/4 cup feta cheese (you can also do 1 cup of either Parm or feta)
1/4 cup butter
1/2 cup flour
2 cups skim milk, warmed (use half and half, whole milk, or even evaporated milk for a richer, creamier soup)
salt & pepper, to taste

Directions
1. Heat oil in 4 quart soup pot. Add celery, onions and carrots. Saute 5 minutes. Add basil, oregano, tomatoes, chicken broth, and chicken. Bring it to a boil, reduce heat and simmer until carrots are tender (15 minutes).

2. While soup simmers, prepare a roux. Melt butter over low heat, add flour and cook, stirring constantly, 5-7 minutes. Slowly stir in 1 cup hot soup. Add another 3 cups and stir until smooth. Add into soup pot.

3. Simmer, stirring constantly, until soup begins to thicken. Add cheeses and stir until blended. Stir in warmed milk & salt and pepper. Simmer over low heat 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally.





The roux …



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