I’m trying to eat more rice these days, and it’s been easy so far with delicious and simple dishes like this one. I then froze a chunk of this and it was oh-so-good, even leftover!
I had picked up some pre-seasoned chicken thighs from Farm Boy a while back and that was my base of things to go with. You can use unseasoned skinless chicken thighs, if you want: this is just what I had. I also had a litre of chicken broth, a 14oz can diced tomatoes, a 244g package of wild rice, a large sweet onion, and some pearl barley.
I also grabbed a healthy handful of pre-mixed Italian seasoning. While I was grabbing these things I preheated my oven to 350°F.
So I cut the onion in half and because it was so huge I only diced up half of it.
On to my grains.
I wanted about two cups of the grains so that I could use all 4 cups of my chicken broth.
There was some math that needed to be done – I only hoped the juice from the tomatoes didn’t make things mushy.
So first I softened the onions in my big skillet with some butter and olive oil.
Then I tipped in the tomatoes and the broth.
Then the uncooked grains.
I added a tablespoon or two of the Italian seasoning. Then I gave it a good stir.
Then I slid in the chicken thighs so they were as on the top as possible. I could definitely have doubled the amount of chicken I used, considering how much leftover rice I had.
Then I hucked the whole thing in the oven for about an hour. You don’t even need to stir it.
And then this gorgeousness was born. Holy moly is it good!
The nice thing about soups is they’re dead easy. I filled a large pot with water and set it to boil. I added a few heaping spoonfuls of Knorr Vegetable Stock (I use the powder instead of the liquid because I usually can’t use a whole carton before it goes bad and I don’t like to waste it).
I peeled and chopped a large parsnip and a small turnip (actually a rootabega but who’s checking?) and chucked them in the pot, together with a handful of pearl barley and about a cup of dried white beans. I also added about a cup’s worth of frozen spinach to the mix, as well as the leftover squash and pasta. There was already a significant amount of basil in the pesto that was on the squash (as well as the hazelnuts and parmesan cheese), so I didn’t add any other herbs to the mix. When we eat it we usually add salt and pepper to suit our individual tastes.
Once I got the soup boiling, stirring often, I turned it down to a simmer, medium low, for about two hours, until the beans were cooked and the rootabega was tender.