#23: Reaffirming our quest to eat healthier

Looking back over my twenty-two recent posts (and sparked by the article I referenced yesterday), I was prompted to try to find some healthier soup recipes.   So I started searching on Cook Eat Share, Eating Well, FoodBuzz, TasteBook and Cooking Light.  I came up with some promising ideas.

The first one that caught my eye was a Chicken & Spinach Soup with Fresh Pesto from Eating Well.  As  it was Sunday, I had not been to the grocery store in two weeks, and it was 11:30, I thought this easy and quick soup would suffice. (I was able to run to the store, come home, prepare the soup and have it on the table by 1:00!)

I made it quicker and easier because I had poached chicken breasts in the freezer and frozen pesto as well.

One cube of frozen pesto from last summer's basil harvest.

I also made a few additions like adding both carrots and red pepper, adding a bit of thyme, and not chopping the spinach.  You can see the original recipe if you go to the above link.  Mine, with modifications, is below.

Chicken and Spinach Soup with Pesto

1 T. extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 cup grated carrots
1/2 red bell pepper, died
1 large garlic clove, minced
5 c. reduced-sodium chicken stock (or your own homemade)
1 1/2 t. dried marjoram
1/2 t. dried thyme
1 (15 oz.) can cannellini beans
5 oz. baby spinach, washed and dried
1 poached chicken breast (about 1/2 lb.), diced
Frozen pesto cubes (or make your own fresh version)

Heat olive oil in a large sauce pan.  Add carrots, peppers and garlic and saute for 1-2 minutes being careful not to burn the garlic.

Add chicken stock to pot with herbs.  Bring to a boil, reduce to simmer and simmer 5 minutes.

Add beans, spinach and chicken.  Bring back to a boil, reduce to a simmer and simmer 5 more minutes to blend flavors.

Almost ready to serve.

Ladle piping hot soup into serving bowls and garnish with a frozen pesto cube (or add a dollop of fresh pesto).  Let guests stir in the pesto.  Enjoy.

Stir in the pesto and enjoy!

And, Happy Valentine’s Day to everyone!
Cannellini Bean on FoodistaCannellini Bean

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