"Now, don’t go thinking you’re gonna throw everything in a pot, Pippi Longstocking-style. There’s a method here." Good Cheap Eats
It's been a busy day - well not really busy - book group, which extended to lunch and long chats afterwards, with the result that I haven't really thought about dinner. I'm also a bit discouraged by the leftovers I have in the fridge - as always not quite enough for two, but too much for one, and so I was glumly looking forward to a week of eating food I'd eaten just a few days before all week.
And then I thought why not soup? Ok it's hot today, so not really soup weather, but it has now clouded over, the house is cool, it's now even raining so I can pretend it's cool and soup weather. I could also have fun making some savoury scones to go with it. It's actually a long time since we have had soup so yes, that's what I think I'll do.
Here is what I have to play with: leftover chicken with spinach and mushrooms, some leftover potatoes and some leftover rice. Well I do also have a leftover pasta dish and some quiche, but obviously you can't really turn quiche into soup. Can you? Just out of interest I actually asked that question of Google, and no you can't really although you can make quiche out of soup! Strain off the liquid and use what's left for your quiche filling. Who knew.
I suppose I could use the leftover pasta but I think it's either the braised chicken or the pasta and the braised chicken lends itself more to the idea of soup. Both together would be too much I think - I mean rice, potatoes and pasta - a bit of a carbohydrate overload there.
I shouldn't do a Pippi Longstocking and just throw it all into the pot. I may even leave out the potatoes. Will decide on that halfway through. Other things I have to add and make more interesting are frozen peas, more stock and some cauliflower that really must be used before too long.
The writer from Good Cheap Eats and the Pippi Longstocking quote suggests this general formula/method:
Heat some kind of fat (butter, oil, drippings) in a large pot.
Add aromatics, such as onion, garlic, mushrooms, celery, or carrots to the pot. These would be new ingredients or leftovers from a previous night.
Stir in broth or stock as well as longer cooking ingredients such as raw potatoes. Again, potatoes may be a new ingredient. If you’ve got leftover cooked potatoes, add those at the end so that they don’t overcook.
Add vegetables, cooked meats, seasonings, and other leftovers you’re mixing in.
So maybe what I should do is strain the braised chicken If I can. Although looking at it I doubt I can. It already has onions, mushrooms, garlic that have been fried in it, so I think I'll just skip step one and plunge right in with the braised chicken base, and then add other stuff. More stock, the rice, maybe the potatoes, then some small florets of cauliflower and finally the peas and some herbs. Lots of herbs I think. I've just been to Coles where I picked up some healthy looking bunches of various herbs. Tarragon I think is the one I'll go for - with some parsley. And maybe a bit more paprika - there was paprika in the braise. Some passata? Look I fear I'm doing the Pippi Longstocking thing. But why not?
So rubbish soup it is. Better go and get it going or I won't have time to make those scones.