Creamy Chicken and Wild Rice SNOW DAY Soup

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Finally! The first snow day of 2015. . . and the kids had the day off school anyway! Oh well, slows life down a bit and makes me want to snuggle under a blanket in front of the fireplace. Also makes me eat my way through hibernation and NEED this soup. I found the recipe on Lauren’s Latest and will link to her at bottom of post. In my house, this recipe must be doubled (or the last guy to the pot won’t get any!). Happy Hibernating!

Creamy Chicken & Wild Rice Soup

yield: 6 servings

Ingredients:

2 tablespoons butter

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 cup onion, diced

4 ribs celery, chopped

4 large carrots, peeled and cubed

6 cups good quality chicken broth

3/4 lbs. chicken breasts, cubed

1-6 oz. box Uncle Ben’s Long Grain & Wild Rice

1 1/2 cups half and half

1/3 cup all purpose flour

plenty of salt and pepper

Directions:

In large pot, heat butter and olive oil. Saute onions, celery and carrots on medium low heat for 10 minutes to soften. Season vegetables with salt and pepper. Pour in chicken broth and cubed raw chicken. Raise temperature to medium high heat to poach chicken in cooking liquid. Once chicken has cooked and become opaque, pour in rice and seasoning packet that came with the rice. Cover and reduce heat to simmer lightly for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. In small bowl, whisk cold half and half with flour until smooth. Pour into soup pot and reduce heat completely to low. Cook 10 minutes or until rice is softened completely and soup has thickened slightly. Taste and season accordingly. Serve hot.

http://www.laurenslatest.com/creamy-chicken-and-wild-rice-soup/

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Lemon Chicken Orzo Soup

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(not my best photo ever!)

This easy chicken soup is made with a light and refreshing lemon broth, orzo pasta, and vegetables. It is healthy and perfect for a cold day!

I found it at Two Peas & Their Pod, but I prepared the chicken a bit differently because I had boneless, skinless thighs in the refrigerator. Lately my husband is loving the flavor and moisture natural to chicken thighs vs. the way breasts tend to become dry so easily.

So, first I rinsed, salted and peppered the thighs and then cooked them in a bit of olive oil right in my deep soup pot. They didn’t take long. I removed them to cool and started sauteing the vegetables without even cleaning the pot. However, if you picked up a rotisserie chicken at the grocery, shredding that meat would work well, too!

Ingredients:

2 tablespoons olive oil (1 for chicken, 1 for vegetables)

1 medium onion, diced

2 cloves garlic, minced (you know I use jarred garlic!)

2-3 carrots, peeled and sliced 1/4 inch thick

1-2 celery stalks, thinly sliced

8 cups chicken broth

zest of 2 lemons

juice of 2 lemons (about 1/3 cup)

1 bay leaf

1 1/2 cups orzo pasta

2 cups cooked, shredded chicken

1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves

salt and pepper, to taste

Directions:

1. In a large stockpot, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat (cook chicken if needed). Saute onion, garlic, carrots, and celery until tender, about 5 minutes.

2. Add the chicken broth, lemon zest, lemon juice, bay leaf, and bring to a boil. Add the orzo and cook, stirring occasionally, for 6 to 8 minutes or until orzo is tender. Add the cooked, shredded chicken and heat for about 5 minutes.

3. Remove the pot from the heat. Discard the bay leaf and stir in the parsley. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Ladle the soup into bowls and serve warm.