Chunky chicken soup – hearty and healthy weekday food

23:07

I am usually trying to be reasonably healthy during the week. It doesn’t always work like yesterday when we had red wine marinated venison steaks, which were quite healthy in themselves although there was some sneaky butter basting going on.  With all the other stuff that went down with the steaks though including a generous helping of red wine it wasn’t perhaps what the doctor would have ordered on a Tuesday night.

The venison steaks were pretty lovely, unfortunately I put them in the marinade 4 days ago and have completely forgotten what I put in it apart from the obvious red wine, so can't blog it. Note to self, write stuff down.

So tonight was a good chance for a little corrective manoeuvre and penance in the shape of a chicken soup. This is quite a wintery dish but luckily it’s bloody freezing so it worked really well.

Chunky healthy chicken and vegetable soup

There are as many versions of this as there are times I have cooked it, I just basically chuck whatever veg and herbs I fancy in the pan with some chicken and chicken stock and it is always great.

This time it turned out looking really nice as well, the very ripe pointed red pepper I used gave out some lovely red hue to the broth and it looks almost like there was some cream added. I swear there wasn't!

A good tip is to position it as a stew to the male audience rather than a soup which sometimes can be considered girl food. What bloke will say no to a big bowl of hearty stew!

Recipe: Chunky chicken and vegetable soup (serves 4)


Oil
1 leek
½ large red bell pepper or 1 small
500 g boneless and skinless chicken thigh or breast
Chicken stock (enough to cover the veg and meat)
1 courgette
Can of butter beans
Herbs (I used tarragon and parsley this time)
Salt and pepper
Squirt of lemon juice

Heat a small amount of rapeseed oil in a soup pan. Add the chopped leak and fry a couple of minutes add the chopped bell pepper and chicken pieces and continue to fry for a few minutes until vegetables are softened a little and chicken no longer looks pink on the outside. Add chicken stock, lemon juice and chopped herbs. Cook for 5 minutes on medium heat. Add the chopped courgette and drained butter beans and continue cooking until chicken and courgette are done, approximately another 5-8 minutes. Add salt and black pepper to taste, add a squirt of lemon if needed. Serve with (or without) toasted slices of wholemeal bread.

Sometimes I add a glug of white wine before the stock, also butter beans can be left out or replaced by any other type of bean, pasta or potato chunks. You can include celery, carrot, onion etc. Sky's the limit! It's a very quick and versatile little everyday gem of a soup. I mean stew.

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