I was tempted to call this “Kitchen Sink Soup”. But that would do no justice to this amazing concoction which took the chill out of a very chilly weekend. It also was so easy to make, I realized that it would entirely possible to make this a weeknight meal whenever the cold sets in. I had an ulterior motive for making this too. I was about to move back to New York so our kitchen in Bridgehampton will no longer be open 7 days a week. I wanted to empty the vegetable drawer and this was an ideal way to do it. Having been cooking for one, I also wanted to incorporate the remnants of two frozen vegetables and some leftover brown rice. And the spice? Well among my vegetables were two Fresno chiles and in they went. The result was a soup with a lot of kick, which I loved but which, if you object to spicy food, you can omit. And that’s really the beauty of this soup. It can pretty well contain absolutely any vegetable you like. Into mine, in addition to the Fresno peppers, went onions, carrots, and celery, snap peas and broccoli florets. As to the chicken, I used two boneless breasts, about 1 ½ lbs of chicken, cut into ¾ inch pieces and browned. But you could even cheat here and just use 1 1/2 lbs of cut up rotisserie chicken instead. Add the stock, simmer for all of 15 minutes and voilà, soup! Right after the fold, there’s the recipe:
Recipe for Spicy Chicken Vegetable Soup
Takes under a hour to make. Makes 10 cups of soup.
2 boneless, skinless breasts of chicken, cut into ¾ inch pieces.
4 tbsp. Olive Oil, divided
64 oz. Chicken Stock
5 medium carrots, diced
1 large Spanish Onion, diced
4 stalks of celery, trimmed and chopped
3 Fresno Chiles, sliced, seeds left in for spice, removed for less.
1 cup frozen snap peas
1 cup frozen Broccoli Florets
1 cup cooked brown rice
3 cloves of garlic, minced
½ tsp. celery salt
2 Bay leaves
Salt and freshly ground pepper
1. Heat half the olive oil in a Dutch oven. Salt and pepper the chicken thoroughly, then put it in the Dutch oven to gently brown, about 5 minutes. Remove chicken and set aside.
2. Add the rest of the Olive Oil to the Dutch oven, then add the carrots, onion, celery, chiles, and garlic. Do not add the frozen vegetables or the rice just yet. Cook the vegetables until translucent and tender.
3. Add the frozen vegetables and the rice and stir.
4. Add the chicken and the chicken stock all at once and bring the soup to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer 10 to 12 minutes.
Bring up to a boil then turn the soup off. Taste for salt and pepper. Pour into soup bowls and serve.