Did Someone Say Soup: Chicken and Gnocchi Soup. For When it Has to be Quick and Hearty
On cold weather months soups, stews and casseroles are a staple in our home as I'm sure they are in others. However cliché it sounds there is something very comforting in the "warmth" that some food brings you when you're fighting the outside cold. So I'm always looking for recipes that will satisfy that need while also still fitting into the other important realms of my cooking style (is it fast to make from prep to table, does it encompass a relatively short list of ingredients and will the entire family eat it). And if I'm being completely honest there are only three soups (excluding ramen) that make the list for foods I actually want to eat and enjoy: baked potato, seafood based bisques/ chowders and chicken and gnocchi soup (the hubby will tell you that chicken tortilla soup is a contender in our home as well, more so for him than I). Soup has to be hearty and creamy to get my attention (once again Ramen is the exception to this rule). This recipe meets all my fine points and more. I love how quick it is to throw together. Sometime I oven roast my own seasoned chicken breasts for the protein portion, other times I grab a rotisserie from the store ( I can then use leftover chicken for a pot pie or enchiladas that week as well). What are your favorites soups? Try this one and let me know if it makes the list!
4 tablespoons Butter
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 cup finely diced onion
1/2 cup finely diced celery
4 cups (32 ounces) low sodium chicken broth
3 garlic cloves minced
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 quart half-and-half ( I have substituted milk and heavy cream, it's whatever I have on hand)
1tsp rosemary chopped
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg (optional). If you're going to use it, it's always best to grate your own, keep a few nuggets in your spice cabinet and grate when necessary
1 cup spinach leaves roughly chopped ( I like to use a bag of frozen spinach that I've let defrost some on the counter most of the time I make the soup as it cuts on time but fresh works as well)
1 cup chicken breast cooked and diced (make your own our buy a rotisserie chicken and dice up )
16 ounces package ready-to-use gnocchi
salt and pepper to taste (white pepper if you're more about aesthetic presentation)
1 stalk of celery, chopped
Heat olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add celery, onions and garlic, and sauté for 2-3 minutes until onions are translucent.
Add butter and melt and then whisk in the flour and let it cook for around a minute. Add whatever dairy you are using and whisk until combined with your roux and it has thickened a little.
Add chicken, chicken broth, salt, pepper, and thyme, bring to a boil, then gently stir in gnocchi. Boil for 3-4 minutes longer before reducing heat to a simmer and cooking for 10-15 minutes.
Stir in spinach and cook another 1-2 minutes until spinach is tender. Taste, add salt and pepper if needed, and serve.