February 9th, 2010 at 5:30 pm (Food)
I’m a pretty good cook. I don’t say this to brag, it’s just a statement of fact. My kids don’t like what I cook much of the time, but hey – they’re 4 and 6, ages at which many kids refuse to eat anything but quesadillas and fruit. At least that’s what I tell myself.
I’m making chicken & wild rice soup for the first time today. How I managed to avoid it for so long is a good question, seeing as this is Minnesota and EVERYBODY eats this stuff. Right?
I poked around on the internet for a while, looking for recipes to follow. Nothing really looked right until I came across this recipe on A Good Appetite, which is a fantastic food blog. I’m modifying her recipe a bit to suit my needs, but it was a good place to start.
First of all, I poached a package of 5 skin-on, bone-in chicken breasts in enough water to cover, seasoned with salt and pepper. Once they were cooked through, I pulled them out to cool and threw in 2c of raw wild rice to cook in the broth. Once that was tender (it took almost an hour), I drained it and spread it out to cool. I won’t use all of the wild rice and chicken in the soup, but the rest of it will go in the freezer to be used in this recipe later this week.
Meanwhile, I pulled out two packages of chicken stock to thaw – roughly a quart. I also chopped up my vegetables – several shallots (the end of my CSA allium stash), two large cloves of garlic, several carrots, and two stalks of celery. By then, the chicken had cooled enough to handle, so I removed the skin and bones and broke it into bite-sized chunks.
The cast of characters
Now, time to cook! I melted 2TB of butter and 1TB lard in a pan (the lard kept the butter from burning) and threw the veggies in with some salt and dried thyme. They cooked with the lid on until the onions had become translucent and the vegetables had rendered some liquid. At that point I threw in about 1/4c flour and mixed it around, then let it cook for a few minutes to take off the raw flavor from the flour. I added the chicken stock and let it come to a boil and thicken, then reduced the heat to a simmer and let it cook until the carrots were tender. At that point, I added in 1c heavy cream (milk or half & half would be good here, I just had the cream on hand), about 2/3 of my cooked chicken and about 2c of the cooked wild rice and let it simmer for a few minutes to let the flavors blend.
Looks right, tastes right!
We’re off to go sledding now, this will be a good dinner when we come back!