Cream of Chicken Soup

I have loads of chicken left over from last nights dinner so decided to use some of it for this soup..

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I always thought a cream of soup would have way more cream in it than 2 tbsps! I would normally avoid a cream soup if I’m on a diet but considering the amount of cream that’s in this then it’s not that calorific!

I was hoping to use some homemade stock but I didn’t have enough in the freezer so had to opt for a cube!

It did seem a bit of a faff first mixing the flour with some milk, then boiling the stock and adding to the milk and then putting back in the pan. I felt a couple of those steps could’ve been omitted!!

Anyway while the liquid was boiling it did thicken ever so lightly, certainly not as much as I would’ve liked.

I added the rest of the ingredients and then it was ready..

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We just had this with a load of homemade bread. It is quite a thin cream and I would’ve preferred much thicker. I also think there wasn’t enough chicken. The flavour was good though, but I didn’t taste any nutmeg so suppose more of that could be added. What I do think would’ve been good is some rice or some soup pasta to help thicken up.

Would I make this again? Yes but definitely needs to be thicker

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Fish Chowder

When I think of fish chowder I imagine something white and creamy..

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Onions and bacon frying in butter is always a good start to a dish for me!!

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I kept the fish pretty chunky as I thought half an hour simmering seemed like a long time for haddock. I also kept the potato small as I didn’t want to also have undercooked potatoes!

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I didn’t bother beating the tomatoes to a pulp, i just added the can straight to the pot with the stock and seasonings.

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I did not have this simmering for half an hour, I think it was just about 15 minutes. I did think maybe I should’ve had the potatoes simmering in the liquid for 10 minutes then add the fish later on. The fish was really starting to break down into flakes after the 15 minutes.

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So how did this taste? It is lovely, the fish is really soft and the potatoes are also just the right texture. The flavour from the sauce with the tomatoes bacon and seasonings is great too. Overall it’s a good soup and another good family dinner and maybe considering it’s not a creamy chowder makes it a lower calorie version of a fish chowder!

Would I make this again? Yes I would

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Creme Vichyssoise

I have to admit I am not that keen on the idea of cold soup. I’ve never tried gazpacho, and the idea of a creamy cold soup appeals to me even less than a cold tomatoey soup..

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I believe this is quite a traditional recipe, and according to the website I found it’s origin is a subject of debate; some say it originates from USA and other say France. The title to me suggests France.

It’s pretty much like making a cream of leek and potato soup and then leaving it to chill! I opted to blend rather than sieve, but it was still looking a tad lumpy even after a good 5 minutes blending!

I have an abundance of chives in my garden, which come back year after year without really much attention which is my kind of plant! Anyway I snipped a good few over the top before serving..

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I had just made this for me because the other two in the house didn’t want cold soup for tea! My daughter did actually try some and she said it tasted nice but was far too cold! I totally agree with her assessment, it’s a lovely flavour of soup but I didn’t love the coldness of it. It made the texture really heavy and after half a bowl I couldn’t face anymore! Not because it didn’t taste nice but because it made me sooo full.

What I did do was heat the soup up and then I finished it no problem, and to be honest it was much much nicer! I was worried that would make me sound so unappreciative of the cold soup idea, but when I read up on vichyssoise it says to serve hot or cold….

Would I make this again? Yes but not too sure if I’d have cold again!

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Cream of Onion Soup

The thought of this soup really didn’t appeal to me at first, but then I do really love french onion soup so felt I should be more open minded about this one…

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I halved this recipe as was making this for lunch for me and my daughter. I ended up with 2 large onions and was using some chicken stock I’d made and again I just made up a bouquet garni with the herbs in the garden..

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I wasn’t a fan of onions when I was younger but even my daughter thought the smell of the onions cooking was great! I left them to cook for the full 45 minutes and by then they were really soft. I opted to blitz rather then sieve and it did look a decent consistency at this point before I added any milk and flour.

I don’t really think my butter and flour really ended up like a smooth cream but I added it anyway, and then after a bit of boiling it was even thicker.

I always expect a cream of soup to have more than just a couple of tablespoons of cream!

Half of these quantities made enough for one big bowl and one child sized bowl but I wasn’t sure how much my daughter was going to enjoy this!

I think even I was surprised how nice this was, it was a really lovely consistency and the flavour was fab, definitely not an overpowering oniony flavour! I had put the large bowl down for me and the smaller bowl for my daughter, but she loved this so much that she switched the bowls and she polished off the lot! Has to be a good sign?!?

Would I make this again? Yes, was way better then I expected

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Cream of Asparagus Soup

I’ve got to be honest, I wasn’t particularly looking forward to this recipe. It’s maybe a bit warm for soup!!

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So I had bought the asparagus for this soup and despite not being in the mood for hot soup I carried on anyway! I would say I had a medium sized bundle, and the others in my house did not want soup so I halved this and made just for me!

It’s quite an unusual method to put the butter, onion, stock and asparagus straight into the pan and leave to simmer. Once I added the flour with the stalk it thickened up really quickly. I opted to blend rather than sieve.

I attempted to garnish with the tips but they sunk! Also the photo makes this look almost white but it was actually a really nice pale green.

We’ll I was pleasantly surprised. This is delicious, I just loved the flavour of this soup! The texture was good as well, lovely and velvety and not too thin! Overall I really enjoyed this and was really easy to make.

Would I make this again? Yes I most definitely would!

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Bortsch

I believe this is a Ukrainian soup, but any other recipe I found kept the beetroot in the soup and didn’t involve the whole straining thing..

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What a mess I made grating the beetroot. I fished out the grater attachment for my mixer that I don’t think I’ve ever used, but despite using that I made one heck of a mess! It looked liked I butchered something in the kitchen and my hands were a lovely shade of pink!

One of the things I like about soup is that it tends to just involve one pan and a blender. Well to make this I used 3 pans, 2 sieves and a mixer. I used three pans as every time I strained it I used another one! Way way to much washing up for my liking!

Also I hated straining off all the veg, and I ended up eating some of it straight from the sieve and it was really yummy!

I’ve never used egg white in this way, and I do think it did make the soup a bit clearer. I’m pretty sure I saw a chef in TV do this last week and he made some comment about the boiling stage, so not sure if I over boiled or under boiled as the soup didn’t look completely clear. Have to say the egg white looked utterly revolting as it was being strained off so I had no problem putting that in the bin!

So how did this taste? I actually really liked this. I put a spoonful of sour cream in the soup and had hoped that would make a pretty photo – it didn’t, it looked seriously awful but tasted great!

Even my daughter ate this and think at first she found the colour amusing, but then after half a bowl had had enough. It’s just very thin, and can’t help but think how good it would’ve been if I had left all the veg in..

Would I make this again? Just like this, no probably not, I would make a beetroot soup again but wouldn’t waste all the tasty veg

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Cream of Cucumber Soup

I really can’t imagine a cucumber making a good soup. I had real reservations about this recipe. I do like cucumber, but cold just as it is, I’m not sure about this one…

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As you can see there’s no other veg in this, it’s just the cucumber! I usually have onions and potatoes in my soup for flavour and thickness. This recipe is using the egg yolk trick for thickening and I suppose that will keep the calories down in this one. Yes there is cream but only a couple spoonfuls!

I was a bit stumped at the first step, how on earth do you scald a cucumber! There is a whole chapter on cooking terms so here’s the definition of scalding..

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This doesn’t actually help, the cucumber isn’t hairy, dirty and I assumed I’m not trying to remove the skin? So no idea what the purpose of that stage was!

I was using ham stock for this and I still have a supply of mace.

So boiled cucumber doesn’t look terribly appealing, hence the lack of photos. When I added the egg yolk the whole texture changed and it became very velvety looking. Still didn’t look thick enough for me but was looking a bit more appealing!

Well I was pleasantly surprised! I actually enjoyed this, and even my 6yr old daughter enjoyed it, although she was convinced it was pea soup! It’s certainly not a strong flavour, but it’s very pleasant. I definitely like my soups much thicker, I had to throw a slice of bread in to soak it up a bit!

Would I make this again? Maybe, I’d need to add a potato or two to make it thicker!

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