For those of you enjoying a nice, long weekend after the first full week back following the holidays, I hope you’re cozy and snug this morning. For those of you not enjoying a nice, long weekend like me, I hope you’re staying warm through this most recent arctic blast! Working from home definitely has its perks. I don’t have to go out when it’s snowing and feels like 9 degrees outside. Don’t be too jealous though because I have to venture into society the next three days so I’ll be suffering with the best of them. Today’s recipe celebrating National Soup Month is perfect for those extra cold nights when you’re not feeling 100% and want something a little heavier than Classic Chicken Noodle. This Creamy Lemon Chicken Soup is easy to make and gives the immune system a nice boost with the squeeze of lemon and loads of garlic. It’s packed with veggies too which makes you not feel so bad about the cup of heavy cream (which divided into four servings is hardly anything anyway).
When I was brainstorming soup recipes for this month, I was hesitant about sharing two different chicken soups. It felt redundant but the Classic Chicken Noodle and the Creamy Lemon Chicken have different flavor profiles. While one is comforting and classic, the other is comforting and creamy. Besides that, the ingredients are a bit different. The Lemon Chicken uses several more vegetables and the Classic Chicken is really all focused on the homemade stock. The Lemon Chicken is also starch-free where the Classic Chicken has both noodles and potatoes. So there you have it! Decision made. Two chicken soups for the win. Besides, you can totally make these both in the same week and not get sick of chicken soup. They’re just so tasty. And...if you’re looking for a short cut, use the leftover chicken breasts from making the stock in the Classic Chicken Noodle in this recipe and you’ll skip the entire first step. Not only does it save time, it saves money.
Another reason this Monday is particularly difficult is because it’s my first official week back in the city. I’ve been living in the suburbs for about three and a half years but recently, I made the decision to split my time between the two. It’s a long and rather personal story I won’t get into but bottom line, I live a few days or weeks at a time in each place. I finally moved into my space downtown this weekend making it a functional place to both live and work which is fantastic! I’ll be able to lead a productive life whether I have a busy week of meetings in the city or absolutely nothing to do but sit at a desk in the suburbs. It will also give me back what’s left of my broken social life. Being away from the pups is something I could not prepare myself for though. We just celebrated Scooby Doo’s first gotcha day and second birthday this weekend. He was so excited, I promise that he knew we were all there for him. It made me so happy to see him so excited. Leaving him for a week is just about killing me but I can’t take him away from his big fenced-in backyard and Lou Lou (who I miss equally as much). So while he’s nice and warm snuggling with my cousins back in the suburbs, I’ll be snuggling a pillow with a big bowl of this soup to fill the void. Dramatic? Yeah, I agree. It still doesn’t change the fact that this soup is perfect comfort food though.
Creamy Lemon Chicken Soup
1 tbsp. Olive Oil
3 Chicken Breasts, cut into chunks
2 tbsp. Butter
1 Onion, diced
2 large Carrots, diced
2 Celery Stalks, diced
4 Garlic Cloves, minced
1 cup Frozen Peas
¼ cup + 2 tbsp. Flour
6 cups Chicken Stock
1 tsp. Thyme, finely chopped
1 tsp. Rosemary, finely chopped
1 cup Heavy Cream
Juice of 1 Lemon
Salt & Pepper
1 - In a large pot or Dutch oven, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Season the chicken with salt and pepper, add to the pot and cook until golden and cooked through, about 10-12 minutes. Remove to a plate.
2 - Back in the same pot, melt the butter. Add in the onion, carrots, celery and garlic. Cook 8-10 minutes until starting to soften. Add the peas and give a quick stir just to thaw them out a bit. Add the flour and cook until slightly golden and fragrant. Slowly whisk in the chicken stock, avoiding any clumps. Add the herbs and the chicken, bring to a boil and let simmer 15-20 minutes until veggies are cooked through.
3 - Stir in the heavy cream and lemon juice. Bring to a boil. Turn off the heat and serve with a side of crusty bread.
*NOTE: Cooking time(s) may vary. Use this recipe as a guide and adjust anything as necessary.