I love soup. And not just in the winter. I really could eat soup all the time all year round. But it’s especially comforting on cold, damp days like today.
And you know what else I love? My Instant Pot! As someone who loves to cook all sorts of things – this isn’t a tool I use every day. I like variety – and lets face it, most of what comes out of the IP is what my family calls “goop on rice”. (Although I did make a super tasty cheesecake!).
This soup couldn’t be easier. No soaking beans. Just throw it all in and let the magic pot do it’s thing. With all the liquid, it does take awhile to come up to pressure – so 40 minutes of pressure cooking, 20 minutes of release, the veggie chopping and the coming up to pressure – it’s a good hour and a half before you have soup. I did use chicken broth instead of vegetable broth – I just like it better.
Of all the recipes that I make, this is one that I’ve probably made the most…and it’s definitely my most requested recipe whenever I share (and I share often since when I make it, it makes a ton!!). I’ve altered it many times since I got it from my good friend Carter – she made it for one of our scrapbooking trips forever ago.
It has a ton of ingredients – but seriously…the longest part is pulling all of the chicken off of a rotisserie chicken.
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 onion, chopped
3 tablespoons margarine
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
3 (14 ounce) cans low sodium chicken broth
4 cups half-and-half (can use fat free half and half – or a combination of both). *note below
1 (10.75 ounce) can condensed cream of chicken soup
1 cup salsa (mild, medium or spicy, depending on taste)
1 (15 ounce) can creamed corn
1 (15 ounce) can whole corn
1 (15 ounce) can black beans (I find that I usually add 2 cans of beans – I like it chunkier)
pulled chicken from 1 store bought rotisserie chicken
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 (1.27 ounce) packet dry fajita seasoning
3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro (I always add a lot more!!)
8 ounces shredded pepper-jack cheese (or plain jack if you don’t want the heat)
1. In a large pot over medium heat, saute the garlic and onion in the
butter or margarine for 5 minutes. Add flour and stir well, cooking for
1 minute more. Add the broth. Bring to a boil and reduce heat to low.
2. Add the soup, salsa, corn, beans, chicken, cumin and fajita seasoning.
Stir and continue to barely simmer for 15 minutes. Add half and half
and cheese. (the original recipe called for adding the half and half
with the chicken broth, but I found that when you use the fat free
stuff, it separates when it cooks too long – so I like to add it to
the end. It doesn’t change the flavor if it separates – just makes it
look a little funny). Heat until cheese is melted – bring to just
under a simmer only. Add cilantro.
3. Serve with crushed tortilla chips.
*note: the above is how I made it for years. Lately, I don’t think it needs as much half & half. I probably use about half of the amount…I eyeball it – I pour some in until it’s a color that I like. I think the flavors shine more with less half & half.
My newest favorite blog is http://www.skinnytaste.com/. She really has some great sounding recipes – they sounded so good that I ordered her cookbook and her spiralizer cookbook. A lot of her recipes are on her blog – but there are a bunch that are just in her cookbooks. Like this one – it’s not on her blog, but I found it posted somewhere else. Go here to see it:
First thing you’ll notice is that she calls her soup Italian ESCAROLE and White Bean soup. I had some kale on hand, so I thought I’d use that. It came out delicious with the kale. I can’t comment on the escarole, but I’m guessing it would be good too. Another note – I didn’t use nearly as much pasta as she put in the recipe. As I was adding it, a little more than half seemed plenty. Otherwise I think I’d have pasta salad more than soup. And definitely sprinkle the Parmesan cheese on top. It’s a perfect lunch.
In my last post, I told you about a delicious roasted turkey breast that I made. The turkey breast gave us quite a few leftovers (bonus!). So even after a few sandwiches, I decided to make some soup – came across this one and it’s pretty tasty!
A few notes…I didn’t put the half-and-half in until the end because I think it tends to get a little funny when you simmer half-and-half for too long. I also think that the turkey could benefit from some more simmering in the soup – so I would put that in with the carrots. I used all chicken broth instead of broth and water since I was opening a carton – so why not use it. Definitely taste before adding the salt at the end. Makes a nice lunch!
Ok, so maybe grilled cheese sandwiches aren’t exactly healthy, but using great ingredients and making it at home is certainly better than the alternative of eating out. Let’s start with the soup:
This was the inspiration for my soup: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/rachael-ray/quick-creamy-tomato-soup-recipe.html.
It looked good, sounded promising – but after reading a bunch of reviews, I realized it would take some doctoring. So this is what I did:
- Saute 1 small onion chopped and 2 cloves of garlic chopped in a saucepan with some olive oil.
- Add 1 carton of chicken broth (my soup was a little thin – if you like it thicker, add less)
- Add 2 cans of fire roasted diced tomatoes.
- Add 1 can tomato paste.
- Add 1/2 teaspoon sugar.
- Add some chopped basil (I’m not sure how much I used – I keep it chopped in my freezer – I grabbed a small handful).
- Simmer 15 minutes.
- Turn off heat and add 1 Cup half & half.
- Use an immersion blender and blend until smooth (I wound up leaving a few chunks of tomato).
- Taste check – add some fresh ground pepper and more basil to taste.
Ok…on to the grilled cheese. This was my inspiration – and exactly what I did:
Ok – not exactly, because I didn’t make Bobby Flay’s soup. But the fontina grilled cheese with sage mushrooms is so good. Go the extra mile and get sourdough bread. Grown up grilled cheese sandwiches deserve it.
I love soup. Especially when it’s getting cold outside. But honestly, I can eat soup even when it’s 100 degrees out. I make lots of different one (hopefully will post some more soon!!). But this was delicious. I made a few changes – I used fresh herbs (parsley and thyme) instead of dried. I used the suggested substitution of a can of creamed corn and some frozen corn. Using a store bought rotisserie chicken (one of my favorite short cuts!!) made this come together really fast. And I didn’t think it needed cheese – which is weird because I love cheese. But the flavors just didn’t call for cheese to me. YUM.