Girls’ Night Gets Fancy: Curried Carrot Soup and Tarragon-Braised Chicken

Monday, March 28, 2011

Look. I’m the last person who is going to get on your case about whipping up a quick lasagna, or ordering a pizza when your friends come over for a low-key movie night. This gets harder and harder to do now that 98.4% of my friends have figured out I’m a food blogger (the other 1.6% just think I’m a nutcase for photographing a pan of sautéing onions). However, some nights just call for adding a

touch of pizzazz. Enter my friend, Carolyn (I affectionately refer to her as Caro Syrup. I dunno why. I could be because everything = food to me) who brought over the ingredients for a delicious soup and a comforting side dish.


Curried Carrot Soup with Roasted Almonds

1/4 lb frozen carrots

2 tsp olive oil

1 small white onion, sliced

1 tsp minced garlic

3/4 tsp mild or medium curry powder

1/2 tsp salt

4 cups chicken broth (use veggie to make vegan!)

1/2 cup chopped or slivered almonds


Steam carrots on stove or in microwave according to package directions. Meanwhile, heat olive oil in a medium pot. Add onion and sauté on medium heat until translucent and beginning to brown. Stir in garlic, curry powder and salt, and cook until fragrant. Transfer to a blender or food processor and add cooked carrots. Add 2 cups broth, and blend until smooth. Transfer mixture back to pot, turn heat to high, and stir in remaining broth. Bring to a simmer and season with more salt, if necessary. Divide among bowls and top with almonds.


Braised Chicken with Red Potatoes and Tarragon Broth

2 tsp olive oil

1/3 cup finely chopped shallots

1 lb skinless, boneless chicken breast halves, chopped into bite-size pieces

2 1/2 cups fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth

1/2 cup dry white wine

1 tsp chopped fresh tarragon

1/2 tsp salt

1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper

1 12-oz package red potato wedges

2 Tb chopped fresh flat-leaf pieces


Heat oil in large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add shallots to pan and sauté 1 minute. Add chicken and sauté 2 minutes or until browned. Add broth, wine tarragon, salt and pepper; bring to a boil. Simmer 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add potatoes; simmer 5 minutes or until potatoes are tender. Remove from heat; stir in parsley.


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