Last night's dinner would be perfect after that first big snowfall. You know the one I mean where every moron in the world including you has put off exchanging their summer tires for winter ones and can't keep their jittney on the road; and/or can't see a darn thing because they couldn't find a snow brush in the car and scraped a mere 4 inch spot on the windshield with their Triple A card. Oh, and there's always the ones that forgot how to drive in the stuff to begin with. You know what I'm talkin' 'bout right?
Well a hot and fragrant pot of spicy rich chowder like this one's guaranteed to add some sunshine to an other wise cheerless day. We've bragged about it before (hit the link you'll see it here), but this time I used skinless boneless chicken thighs, left out the flour because the soup definitely didn't need to be thicker, added more chicken stock and used Orzo pasta instead of potatoes. Actually I wish I had used a bigger pasta for a better bite, but hey there's always next time.
Incidentally, the scenario described in the first paragraph is purely from memory. We hit the 90's again yesterday, but I can always dream can't I. It doesn't snow very often here in Tucson and since the Christmas decorations are already out in the stores, I figure it must be winter somewhere.
Easy Cheesy Chicken Chowder (from JBug’s Kitchen inspired by Taste of the Territory Cookbook)
2 pounds diced skinless boneless chicken thighs (about 5 large)
Salt and pepper
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 large onions, chopped
4 medium carrots, peeled and diced
1 jalapeno minced (leave seeds and membranes intact if you want a spicier soup)
2 teaspoons mixed Italian dried herbs
1 teaspoon chili powder
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional)
2 teaspoons garlic powder
4 cups low sodium chicken stock
1 – 14 ounce can diced tomatoes with juice (optional)
1/2 cup Orzo pasta (or 1 cup elbow macroni) uncooked
2 cans cream of chicken (or cream of mushroom) soup
8 ounces Velveeta cheese, cubed
Heat oil in a large Dutch oven over medium high heat. Add onions, and carrots and jalapeno and sauté until onions are softened. Move vegetables over to one side of pot. Add cubed chicken thighs, season lightly with salt and pepper and sauté until no longer pink – about 5 minutes. Add Italian dried herbs, chili powder, cayenne and garlic powder and cook for another 2 or 3 minutes. Add stock, diced tomatoes and pasta. Stir well and bring to a high boil. Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer for 20 to 25 minutes until pasta is cooked and chicken is tender. Stir in cream of chicken soup and cheese. Cook stirring constantly until cheese is melted and soup is hot. Taste for seasoning and add salt and pepper as required. Serve with crusty bread or crackers. Makes 6 to 8 large servings.
A year ago - Raspberry Lemon Thumbprint Cookies
Two year's ago - Making Munchies with Won Ton Wrappers