Polar Vortex Soup

January 29, 2014

Author Notes: A perfect harmony of chicken noodle soup nostalgia and nutrient-packed winter veggies for the frigid winter temperatures. This recipe is super malleable; broths, vegetables, proteins, spices, and herbs can all be tweaked or swapped to your liking. KvellintheKitchen

Serves: 4

Ingredients

  • 2-3 tablespoons tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/2 yellow onion, diced
  • 1 leek, white parts only (optional)
  • Root vegetables galore (carrots, parsnips, turnips; the more the merrier! I used 2 carrots and 2 parsnips)
  • 2 cups cubed squash, butternut or acorn
  • 1 bunch big bunch of dark leafy greens, chopped (kale, collared greens, spinach, swiss chard, bok choy)
  • 1/3 cup whole grain such as brown rice, whole-wheat pasta, barley, or pearl couscous
  • 32 ounces low-sodium chicken broth
  • 3-4 large pieces of chicken, shredded and off the bone (breasts, thighs, legs, drumsticks, or a combination)
  • pinch of thyme and nutmeg (optional; oregano and hot red pepper flakes may also be used)
  • Parsley for garnish (optional)
  • juice of 1/2 lemon, or 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • salt & pepper
In This Recipe

Directions

  1. In a large soup pot, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add onion, cook for 2 minutes. Add leek, chopped root vegetables, and garlic; cook for 5 more minutes, stir every few minutes. Sprinkle with pinch of thyme and nutmeg, and ample salt and pepper.
  2. Add chicken broth and bring to a boil. Once a boil is reached, add grains. Cook until grains have 10 minutes left until al dente, and then add squash, leafy greens, and chicken. (So rice will cook for about 25 minutes before adding next ingredients, while pasta will just be cooked with rest of ingredients because of shorter cook time.) If not using pre-cooked chicken, cube and let the raw meat cook in the broth (about 5 minutes.)
  3. When all ingredients are cooked through, add more salt and pepper; adjust seasonings to taste. Sprinkle pot with parsley and lemon or red wine vinegar, stir.

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