Cold, are you?
I don’t know what is more comforting while we are in the middle of what Stephen Colbert describes as a Polar Vortex then a pot of warm soup.
I love making soup, especially in January when the clean slate of the new year invites clean healthy living. I was craving a good Chicken, White Bean and Kale soup and I made up this one.
It was just so yummy and perfumed with garlic and rosemary, which I love with white beans (think of any rustic Italian white bean dip). I also had fun pureeing this and giving it to 8 month old Andrew. I don’t know what is more fun than introducing a baby to flavors and textures, and it was easy to do with the help of this present I got for
me Rob for Christmas:
It is great for smoothies and juicing, obviously, but it is also pretty handy to keep on the counter and make baby food.
I think the key for soups is to really flavor them, and if you don’t know how to make your own soup you’ll notice after reading a lot of recipes that they often start with a flavor base of carrots, celery and onions. Bay leaf, garlic and herbs like thyme and rosemary are next. Then add your meat (if you are adding it) and stock, and simmer for 20 min, adding leafy greens like spinach or soft veggies like peas at the end.
I used leeks in this recipe since I had them and since they are known for their detoxifying benefits (they are a diuretic, so says the author of French Women Don’t Get Fat in her Leek Soup kick off weekend discussion.)
Then I added garlic and rosemary, celery and carrots, chicken and broth, then beans and kale. Since the kale I had was an already chopped bag from Trader Joe’s I added it towards the end.
Hope this recipe keeps you warm – be sure to add some nice crusty bread and a fireplace that glows.
Chicken, White Bean and Kale Soup (printer version here)
2 T. olive oil
2 leeks, rinsed and chopped
2 cloves of garlic, chopped
2 carrots, peeled and chopped
2 celery, chopped
1 bay leaf
2 chicken breast, cubed
6 cups chicken broth
1 t. salt
1/2 t. pepper
2 t. chopped rosemary
1-2 teaspoons of garlic salt (to taste)
2 teaspoons onion powder
2 cans of Northern White or Canellini Beans
2 cups chopped kale
Heat oil in heavy-bottomed pot on medium heat. Sautee leeks for 2 min., then add garlic and cook for 1 min., then add celery, carrots and bay leaf. Cook for 5 min, stirring frequently. Add chicken and salt, pepper and seasonings and cook for 7-10 minutes, then add broth and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 15 minutes. Add beans and kale and cook for 5 minutes more.
Coming soon…I have lots ideas to share with you about traveling up to the ski condo and feeding lots of people while still having fun and relaxing. Until then, Happy Trails!