It is spring, without a doubt, mostly comforting warm with a gentle light breeze. Blossoms have begun to dot the trees and bright green spears of bulbs have erupted all over the landscape. Soft yellow daffodils line the fence and the deep purple irises won’t be far behind.
Inside all the seeds best started indoors have already grown, tiny green sprouts of various heights becoming larger every day and the already larger early spring veggies have been transplanted to the garden, first peas and spinach planted, carrots and radishes sewn.
But in spite of all that tepid weather and new growth casting out of the winter season, the wet season has begun here on the plains and the cooler dreary drizzling days simply call for soup. Heavy winter soups won’t do in the early spring climate, but rather something lighter was called for and so this soup, a simple mashing together of other older recipes I’ve had for too long, a good use for available ingredients when a spring soup fix is needed.
ROSEMARY CHICKEN SOUP WITH ROASTED ROOT VEGETABLES & CARAMELIZED ONION
This is a soup that is so simple it relies on having the freshest and best quality ingredients. Do not go cheap. With so few required ingredients, it is worth a slight splurge. The onions cook down to a delicate sweetness that absolutely dances with the brightness of the rosemary, coloring the broth to a rich savory caramel tone. And the potatoes, pre-roasting gives them firmness but once cooked in the soup they are absolutely buttery melt in your mouth delicious. Taste before seasoning with salt and pepper however, as spices can easily be overdone with this recipe.
¾ lb small heirloom potatoes
3 large carrots or 1/2lb baby carrots
1 large onion, halved and thinly sliced
2 cups roasted chicken, shredded
Coarse sea salt
1 tsp pepper
¾ tsp rosemary
2 tsp olive oil
6 cups chicken broth
Preheat the oven to 425. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Cut the potatoes in half lengthwise, then cut the pieces into halves or quarters depending on their size. On the prepared baking sheet, toss the potatoes olive oil and about a ½ tsp of salt. Roast for 10 minutes then stir. Continue to roast until tender, about 10 more minutes. Remove the potatoes and carrots from the oven and set aside. When cool enough to handle, cut any larger pieces to bit size and slide the carrots.
Heat oil in 10 inch skillet over med high heat. Add the onions and cook until they begin to brown, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat to medium. Cook until the onions are tender and caramelized, stirring occasionally. Remove the skillet from heat and set aside.
In a large saucepan, heat broth, rosemary, and black pepper to a boil. Stir in the chicken, reduce heat to medium and cook for 5 or so minutes. Add the potatoes and carrots and allow to cook 5 minutes more. Stir in onions, flavor with additional salt and pepper to taste and serve immediately.