I love having soups for lunch – they are light, delicious and most importantly will not put to me to sleep after the meal (especially during work :)). I used to buy canned soup for the convenience of a ready meal after 3 minutes of reheating. As I read the sodium levels on the nutrition label, I decided to make my own. I read some recipes online and came up with this as my freestyle cooking – not following a recipe. The ingredients are very simple: vegetables, chicken broth, chicken, pasta and herbs. I like the using herbs in my soup as they brighten up the flavours. I also used lemon to add a bit of refreshing flavour as well.
Makes 8 – 10 servings.
(I didn’t follow a recipe – adjust portions however you like!)
- 2 pieces of Chicken Breast
- 1 cup Dried Pasta (I used small bow ties), cooked, drained and rinsed
- 5 – 6 Celery Stalks, diced
- 2 medium-sized Carrots, diced
- 1 large onion, diced
- herb bouquet – a sprig of rosemary, 2 sprigs of thyme and sage,
tied together with a piece of cotton string
*If you do not like herbs, omit them.
- 2 cans of Chicken Broth (375 mL each)
- 2.5 – 3 L water
- Juice of ¼ of a lemon
- Salt & Pepper to taste
- Season chicken with salt and pepper, cook, let cool and dice.
*I seared my chicken to add extra flavour but it is not necessary.
- Cook pasta in lightly salted water, drain and rinse.
- Wash vegetables and dice.
- Bring chicken broth and water to a boil with the herb bouquet, add vegetables and simmer at medium heat for 10 minutes.
- Add cooked pasta and chicken, simmer for another 10-15 minutes.
- Fish out herb bouquet, add lemon juice, salt and pepper to taste.
- Soup is served!
This soup is super easy to make, yummy and good for you – just requires a bit of vegetable chopping. I am ditching the canned stuff for good. 8)
How can you go wrong with tomatoes and basil? After successfully making the thin and crispy sesame crackers, I wanted to further customize my recipe. I am addicted to making crackers 🙂 I wanted to try, yes, a classic combination of tomatoes and basil. So I tweaked the recipe and came up with this delicious recipe. These crackers turned out to be very rich in tomato flavour with a hint of basil. This recipe is the almost the same with the sesame crackers recipe, except for the thickness – these are thicker because I wanted the crispiness to be closer to a cracker rather than chips and secondly, the tomato bits can’t be pressed too thin – they will make holes in the crackers when the dough is being rolled out. The oven temperature also needed to be lowered otherwise the tomato will burn easily. I brought a box to work and they were popular – almost all gone in 30 minutes!
- 200 grams All Purpose Flour
- 50 grams Whole Wheat Flour (I used stoned milled)
- ½ tsp. Sea Salt + more for sprinkling tops
- 1 tsp. Baking Powder
- 2 tbsp. Brown Sugar
- 30 grams Sun Dried Tomato – finely chopped
- ¼ cup finely chopped Fresh Basil
- 25 ml. Olive Oil (good quality) + more for brushing
- In a medium bowl, mix all dry ingredients, including chopped basil and sun dried tomatoes.
- Add water and olive oil.
- Mix with a rubber spatula until the dough starts to form. If the dough is too dry, add a bit more water.
- Turn the dough on a counter and knead until it becomes not sticky on your hands.
- Wrap the dough with plastic wrap and let it rest in the fridge for at least an hour to let the flavours develop in the dough.
- After resting, divide the dough into four pieces so you can work them through the pasta maker individually.
* Preheat oven to 350°F/180°C.
- Work the well-floured dough from the thickest setting and gradually to the thinner setting (I rolled these to the setting “5” with the thinnest at “9”).
* If you don’t have a pasta maker, roll the dough with a rolling pin into a very thin sheet.
- Cut the dough sheets so it fits on the cookie sheet, place on the cookie sheet lined with parchment paper and brush with more olive oil and sprinkle with sea salt.
- Cut the dough sheets into small size crackers and bake for 15-16 minutes or until golden brown (keep an eye on them because they can burn easily). Let cool and store in an air tight container.
Tip: Avoid baking these crackers too long because excess browning will diminish the basil flavour in the crackers.
This recipe makes me not wanting to buy crackers anymore, they are so yummy and easy to make, not to mention easy on your wallet!