So you remember that bread bowl I talked about yesterday? Mmm…me too. Well, Mr. Prevention likes to get one of those when we go to Panera and fill it with Chicken and Wild Rice Soup. Always. He never deviates from his soup of choice. This is problematic for people like me who could consume soup daily, even if I were to say, live in Corpus Chrisi or Puerto Vallarta…or some other steamy, uber humid region of the world.
While I didn’t serve this soup in a bread bowl, I did offer it up with a generous portion of that Roasted Garlic and Herb Foccacia I raved about yesterday. Let me just say that was a great move on my part…the two made for one pretty stellar combo.
I bulked up the veggies and cut some calories and fat by using a low-fat milk. As the soup simmered away, the chicken shredded to a fine consistency so much so that the chicken was laced between every grain of wild rice and warm, tender pieces of carrot and celery. A couple of forks and several hours of meat shredding slave labor would’ve never accomplished such technique, I swear. And I know this because Mr. Prevention goes to work on this Buffalo Chicken Dip on the regular…still.
Creamy Chicken & Wild Rice Soup adapted from Budget Bytes
1 Tbsp olive oil
1 medium yellow onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 large carrots, diced
3 celery stalks, diced
1 lb. cooked chicken (I used rotisserie)
1 bay leaf
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp dried thyme
cracked pepper, to taste
1 1/2 tsp salt
1 cup wild rice mix, dry
6 cups water
1/3 bunch fresh parsley, minced
2 Tbsp unsalted butter
2 Tbsp all-purpose flour
2 1/2 cups 2% milk
Heat the olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic to the hot oil and saute until tender, about 5 minutes.
Add celery and carrots to the pot and cook for an additional 5 minutes.
Add the cooked chicken, bay leaf, oregano, thyme, cracked pepper, dry rice, and 6 cups of water to the pot. Bring the pot up to a boil over medium high heat, then reduce the heat to low and let simmer for 45 minutes.
After 30 minutes of simmering, melt the butter over medium heat in a sauce pan. When it is fully melted, whisk in the flour. Cook and whisk the butter and flour mixture for two minutes. Whisk in the milk and allow it to come up to a simmer, whisking occasionally.
Add the parsley and the thickened milk mixture to the soup. Season with salt (I used about 1 1/2 teaspoons) and pepper to taste. Serve. Yield: 6 generous portions (about 1 2/3 cup each)
Nutrition Information (per cup): 320 calories; 12.2 g. fat; 77 mg. cholesterol; 890 mg. sodium; 27.8 g. carbohydrate; 3 g. fiber; 26.5 g. protein
Result: Creamy, and filled with hearty wild rice, tender veggies, and savory, shredded chicken. This was a hit! Simple to make…and cheap! This meal also comes together in less than an hour, with only about 20-30 minutes of hands-on time. Perfect for fall…enjoy!
Money Matters: The chicken was $3.99. It was small, but yielded an exact 1 pound of chicken meat (skin omitted!). The wild rice was $1.60 for the 1 cup I used, and the remaining ingredients were all very cost-effective. The total cost of the recipe came to $8.37, making the cost per serving $1.40!
For purposes of accountability I would like to make mention that I was on my best behavior yesterday after a weekend of indulgences around every corner this weekend. Literally. Turn the block…eat. Round the corner…drink.
Breakfast was a Greek yogurt and a latte. Lunch was a Tempeh BLT with carrot sticks and apple slices. And dinner…was good. But I can’t spoil the surprise (hint: it was pizza, but healthy). I also sweat my little heart out on the elliptical for an entire 4.25 miles. My body can breathe a sigh of relief. Normalcy. And fiber….ahh.