Chicken Amazeballs Soup

Yes, it really is amazeballs…well the little balls of chickeny goodness are and they are what makes this soup. I think I have found a new favourite soup!! My mouth is watering thinking about it right now and last night, I just could not stop eating/drinking it.ย  Ah, I have left overs for lunch!! Could I be anymore excited?!!!!

The base of this soup was really basic and you could add whatever you like but since I wanted the chicken amazeballs to be the super star (and they really were), I used very few ingredients and seasoning. The chicken balls would also be incredible rolled in crumbs and deep fried, or formed into patties and shallow fried. You could probably even bake them…oh, or cook them up in a tomato pasata and serve with pasta….*drool*

Chicken Amazeballs

1 kg skinless chicken breast

1 choko, peeled and roughly chopped

6-8 spring onions

1 clove garlic

3 stalks of celery, roughly chopped

Approx 2 tbsp fresh rosemary

Approx 2 tbsp fresh thyme

Approx 2 tbsp fresh oregano

zest of 1 small lemon

4 tbsp of quinoa flour (or regular flour if you’re not gluten free)

1 1/2 tsp salt

fresh ground pepper to taste

Place all veggies, herbs and seasoning in food processor and process to a pulp. Add chicken and flour and process until smooth. Roll into balls or form into quenelles using 2 spoons. Place on a tray ready to add to the soup.

Soup

3 large carrots

2 stalks celery

1 large zucchini

4 spring onions

1 clove garlic crushed

2 litres home made chicken stock

Salt to taste

Olive oil for sauteeing

Cut the veggies into about 1cm dice and set aside the green parts of the onions. Heat a little olive oil in a saucepan and sautee the celery and carrot for about 5 minutes. Add the zucchini, spring onion whites and garlic and sautee a further 5 minutes. Add the stock and bring to boil then add the raw chicken amazeballs. Simmer until the chicken is cooked through. Add spring onion greens and season to taste.

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Stocking it up!

It’s that time of the month again…..time to replenish my stock.ย  This time I did it slightly different though, I boiled it for 12 hours instead of 2! I could have added a larger variety of veggies but I like the fact that my stock has a very neutral flavour and therefore can be used for anything from light and fragrant Asian inspired dishes to the heavy and hearty Eastern European stuff. I add no herbs to my stock so I can flavour the final dish however I like.

Normally I throw out the remains after I have decanted the liquid but this time I got thrifty and used them to create a stock concentrate. I little more time consuming but well worth the effort…now I have 3 times the amount of stock I normally produce from the same sized pot….a huge 20 litre one in my case ๐Ÿ™‚

Of course, this is just a guide, you can add whatever veggies you like and there are no exact quantities. I also find that keeping a “stock bag” in the freezer is a very economical way of making stock. All it is is a bag of veggie scraps (or stuff my overachieving fridge inadvertently froze for me) that I keep in the freezer for when I make stock. It usually contains things like the celery tops I remove to fit the celery in the fridge, the softer, less appealing green part of the spring onions, cabbage cores, etc.

If using a pot smaller than 20 litres, adjust amounts accordingly.

about 8 chicken frames and as many leg bones as you can get your hands on (this batch had about 10 I think)

1 bunch of dutch carrots with the tops still on

2 swedes

2 leeks

1 bunch spring onions

2 bulbs garlic

1/2 a celery with leaves

2 tbsp salt

water to fill the pot

Roughly chop all the larger veggies, cut the garlic bulbs in half and throw everything into the pot. Fill with water, bring to the boil then reduce heat and simmer for 12 hours. Allow to cool the strain and decant.

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To make the concentrate, remove as much of the meat and veggies as you can, avoiding any bones, and whiz up in a food processor until smooth. Place in a saucepan and simmer until most of the liquid is reduced. Spoon into ice cube trays, cover and freeze. Once frozen, they can be removed from trays and stored in a container in the freezer and used like stock cubes, but bear in mind that they’re not quite as potent.

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Avocado and Cucumber Salad with Dill Dressing

I guess you could say this was a lazy discovery. Yep, that’s the only way I can describe it. But so often, the simple things in life really are the best.

Chopped chunky and you have a salad but chopped all nice and finely and it becomes a salsa…versatile hey? And the perfect accompaniment to fish or chicken. Oh and did I say how dead simple it was? No? Well it’s dead simple ๐Ÿ™‚

2 avocados

2 Lebanese cucumbers

2 tbsp of dill pesto

1 tbsp of white balsamic vinegar

Freshly ground black pepper

Chop up the avocado, dice the cucumbers and toss in a bowl. In a small jug, combine the pesto, vinegar and pepper and mix well. Stir through the avo and cuc and you’re done!!

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Not so stupid dill pesto

Who doesn’t love a pesto?! I certainly do, especially a home made one. Last weekend I whipped up a quick dill pesto to have with salmon and it was such a hit that I made some more this weekend. It’s absolutely perfect with fish but it’s equally as amazing turned into a dressing for an avocado and cucumber salad. Stir a spoonful through a dollop of mayonnaise for something different to accompany your fish or chicken, mix it up with some bread or rice crumbs and use it to stuff a chicken or sandwich between 2 salmon fillets,ย  or simply use it as a dip with crackers. It’s possibilities are almost endless! And best of all, it’s additive and dairy free ๐Ÿ™‚

1 cup of dill

1 clove of garlic

1/4 cup of raw pistachios or pine nuts

1 tbsp of tahini

1/4 cup of extra virgin olive oil

3 spring onions

pinch of salt

Place all ingredients into a food processor and blitz to a fine texture. Yep, it’s that simple!!

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