Chicken and gnocchi soup with fresh herbs and sour cream


Chicken, gnocchi and vegetable soup with fresh oregano and rosemary

I'm hanging by my fingertips here. Crazy colleague woman is working me to the bone on the Project, husband barely recognises me anymore and I'm not sure how much longer I can keep up with this good wife shit.

Luckily - oh I can't say that - Incidentally, the colleague's cat was bitten this morning so she had to take him to the vet which gave me a moment's respite and a chance to work on my other stuff, my normal job. A pretty busy job even without a massive extra project with obsessive crazy powerpoint lady. Anyway I don't know what's going on with that cat, he's not even a year old and has been bitten twice, shot (?!) once (very evil and we were all very angry and managed to create a massive social media thing, but the shooter was never caught) and I don't remember what else, I think once he just ran against a wall just for the heck of it and had to be taken to the vet to be stitched up. I suggested he might be better suited for an indoor life (in a round, padded room). He's clearly not making loads of friends out there. And it's not like he has to build a life amongst the bins in the backyards of Peckham. He lives in Upper bloody Bucklebury.

But anyway, domestic goddessing has had to give way a little.  Husband still thinks he's being well cared for though. I'm sure he'll eventually work out that I am just chucking whatever I can find in the fridge and/or freezer together with some pasta. Luckily he loves that kind of thing, tasty veg and some meat or seafood and pasta with a bit of sour cream or creme fraiche for sauce, sometimes I chuck in some wine. Mostly I just drink it.

Tonight I also had a meeting with the neighbours. Not the fun kind where me and upstairs lady drink bottles of prosecco, eat chocolate, watch Downton Abbey and talk about online dating. Purely theoretical in my case,  but I am really curious because being as old as I am I missed the whole online thing being busy attending assemblies, playing the pianoforte with a heaving bosom (we didn't even have ultra bras those days, so the whole heaving business required some effort and real chicken fillets, not the nice silicon ones we have today) and dropping handkerchiefs left right and centre for gentlemen to retrieve, so it's interesting to hear how it all works including the apparent trend for men to send images of their... you know, "little soldiers" to the ladies. Yes really, I couldn't believe it either, but it happens a lot apparently in the tinderscape. There was an article recently talking about how women are getting really bored and annoyed at receiving these unsolicited pictures now.

So unfortunately not that kind of a meeting this time, but the kind where we talk about gutters, damp, chimney stacks and pitched roof coverings with our two other neighbours. One of them is very nice in a kind of completely useless way. The other one, also completely useless, so useless in fact that he didn't even turn up, is a bit of an unpleasant person, the kind that goes behind my back to complain about my fuchsias to the others. Yes, I cause a lot of trouble in the neighbourhood with my fuchsias.

Luckily the other, very nice and delightfully eccentric neighbour made us lovely Gin & Tonics and we did the freehold gutter/roof talk really quickly and then just chatted about my sexy upstairs single lady neighbour's FB profile picture and London mayoral elections.

The point of all this is to frame the necessity for this quick and easy recipe, which looks like real food, but is basically just chucking loads of whatever was in the fridge & freezer together with some gnocchi and sour cream, But so clever am I that husband had no clue that this was basically the same dish he ate from Monday to Wednesday last week.

Chicken and gnocchi soup with carrots and courgette

Recipe: Chicken, gnocchi and vegetable soup with fresh herbs (serves 4)

1 yellow onion
1 carrot
1 celery stalk
2 garlic gloves
1/2 sweet potato
1 bell pepper (I had a bit of yellow, red and orange just for the colours)
500 ml chicken stock
1 small or 1/2 large courgette
1 tbsp chopped fresh rosemary
1 tbsp chopped fresh oregano
(or thyme, basil whatever you have)
400g chicken (skinless and vo
250g gnocchi
1/4 cup sour cream

Chop the onion, carrot and celery, mince garlic, peel and chop the sweet potato and core and thinly slice the red pepper, chop the courgette and cut chicken into cut size pieces.

Heat olive oil in a deep sauce pan. Add onions, carrot and celery to pan, fry on low to medium heat for five minutes. Add the minced garlic and continue frying for another 2-3 minutes. Add the sweet potato, bell pepper and the herbs, fry for a few minutes. Add the chicken stock and cook until the carrots are done. Add the chicken pieces and the courgette and cook until chicken is done. Add the gnocchi and let simmer for another 2 minutes until the gnocchi pop to the surface. Add sour cream, and salt and pepper to taste.

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