Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Cream of Chicken and Apple Soup

One good habit I've picked up since working at Fuel is making every ingredient count and not letting good food go to waste.  In any restaurant, there is already a lot of food that goes to waste.  Just think of what you didn't finish on your plate the last time you went out to eat!  Therefore, it is really important for the cooks in a kitchen to minimize the problem by being as resourceful as possible.

When we ordered too much asparagus for an event, the next day's special was an amazing prosciutto and asparagus omelette.  Vegetable scraps from prep work- the tops of celery, the ends of carrots- get tossed into the pot for chicken stock.  I've learned that you never want to be the one throwing out a perfectly good ingredient when it can be used for something else.

So that's why when we had company over to our house for dinner the other night, I knew I could use the extra and leftover ingredients to make dinner for Mike and I the following night.  The bones from my roast chicken, the carrot scraps, and extra thyme were used to make some chicken stock which served as the base for this delicious soup.  I happened to have an extra apple or two after I made some apple turnovers, so those went into the soup as well.  The puff pastry left after my turnover-making became a batch of cheese straws to serve alongside the soup.  After a long and very cold wintry day, a dinner of soup and cheese straws was just right, even more so when it prevented the leftovers of the previous evening from going to waste.

For some great tips on being resourceful with your leftovers, click on these links:
Plus, this looks like an awfully interesting book, doesn't it?  I think it might be worth a peek!-

Cream of Chicken and Apple Soup
Adapted from "The Secrets of Jesuit Soupmaking"
3 tablespoons butter
2 medium tart apples, peeled, cored, and chopped
1 medium onion, chopped
2 tablespoons flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 quart homemade chicken stock
3/4 cup dry white wine
1 cup light cream
1 generous cup diced cooked chicken
1 cup cooked brown rice
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
Chopped green onions, for garnish

-Heat the butter in a large saucepan and cook the apples and onions until the onion is translucent.
-Add the flour and salt, stirring the mixture to combine.
-Add the stock and wine.
-Bring to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer, stirring occasionally.  Let the soup simmer for 10-15 minutes.  Allow to cool slightly.
-Whirl the mixture 2 cupfuls at a time in a food processor until it is smooth.  Return to the saucepan along with the cream, chicken, and rice.
-Heat soup through and season with pepper, nutmeg, and additional salt, if needed.
-Ladle into bowls, garnish with a sprinkle of green onions and a pinch of nutmeg.


mvs said...

Quite delicious!

Emily said...

This sounds so good... and I had no idea that Jesuits are experts in soupmaking! Delightful!