Friday, February 12, 2010

Chicken Soup for the Soul

Even though we are all grown-up, I think all of us wish our Moms could magically show up when we get sick to take care of us, wherever we are. There's nothing quite like Mom being there when your head is heavy with a cold or you have a raging fever, and Moms always seem to know just the right thing to do to help.

I felt this particular bout of sickness coming earlier this week, but it wasn't until yesterday morning that I was officially and horribly under the weather. I went over to Publix to pick up a few "sick essentials" that I didn't have on hand already - Tissues. Juice. Rice pudding (I just love this when I am sickly!).

The one thing I wish I had had on hand already, though, was a soup I made two weeks ago, and LOVED. It's a chicken, veggie, and noodle soup, just like Mom would have made at home - and so I just have to share the recipe with you here today. If I had been smart, I would have frozen some of this soup for a day just like today when I am ill, and it would totally hit the spot. But no, I was stupid and ate it all that week because it was just so gosh darn good!!

Make this on a weekend or when you have a few hours to let it cook. It takes some time, but I promise you it is worth it. Roasting the vegetables intensifies the flavor. When you are done, do what I didn't do and freeze some of it for that day when you feel like death and just need a taste of Mom's home cooking :)

Roasted Vegetable Rosemary Chicken Soup
Makes 8 1-cup servings, 3 WW points each

1 c. each, cubed: carrots, onion, baby portabella mushrooms, celery, red bell pepper
1 c. water
2 tbsp. chopped fresh rosemary
1/4 tsp. salt
4-14oz. cans fat free, low sodium chicken broth (I was short on this and so I added a half cup of white wine too. It added great flavor, and I'd do it again!)
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 lb skinless, boneless chicken breast, cooked and chopped
2 c. whole wheat uncooked rotini pasta

Preheat oven to 375. Combine vegetables with a few tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil, toss to coat, and spread out on a pan. Roast in oven for 50 min, stirring occasionally.

Combine water and next 5 ingredients through chicken in a Dutch oven. Bring to boil, reduce heat, and simmer for 30 minutes. Add the roasted vegetables, and cook for another 30 minutes. Bring to a boil, add the pasta, and cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Note from K: I added in some fresh spinach at the end for additional color and flavor. Stir in right at the end; it will wilt immediately. Portion out into 1-cup servings for lunches or snacks to make your week even easier. This soup is very filling and great for anyone watching what they eat.