Roasted Root Vegetable Chicken Soup

I always make extra roasted root vegetables and I made up this recipe to use them.  Browning the chicken adds great flavor to the soup as does caramelizing the onion.  I have used Orzo instead of of rice and it works well, but if you leave it for left overs the Orzo gets a little too soft for my taste.  If you don’t have any left-over roasted root vegetables, you can roast a small amount for this recipe.

1 whole chicken breast, skinless and boneless, cut into small bite-size pieces
2 Tbs. olive oil
3/4 cup onion, diced small
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
1/4 cup celery, diced fine
1/2 cup white wine
1/2 tsp. lemon juice
3 cups chicken broth
1/8 to 1/4 tsp. rosemary
1/8 to 1/4 tsp. thyme
1 Tbs. dried parsley
2 cups roasted root vegetables, cut in small chunks
(roasted vegetables from my Roasted Root Vegetable recipe
potatoes, carrots, and parsnips work well)
1/2 cup mushrooms, sliced
salt and pepper to taste
1/2 cup rice (wild rice is good)
1/2 cup frozen peas (optional)

In a large pan, saute the chicken breasts in the olive oil on medium-high heat until browned, sprinkle with salt and pepper, stirring when needed.  When the chicken pieces are browned and cooked through, remove them from the pan.  In the same pan, on medium low heat, add the onion and cook until they are soft and starting to carmelize, stirring often so they don’t burn. The onion should be  golden brown.  Add the garlic and celery, cooking until the celery is softened, stirring often.  Pour in the wine and boil down so it is reduced by half, scraping any brown pieces off the pan.  Add the lemon juice and chicken broth and bring to a boil.  Add the herbs and rice.  Lower the heat and cover.  Simmer until the rice is tender, cooking according to the directions for the rice.  This will take 20 to 40 minutes, depending on the type of rice used.  Uncover and turn up the heat.  Add the mushrooms, simmer until the mushrooms are softened.  Return the chicken and root vegetables to the pan, salt and pepper to taste. More herbs may be added if desired and frozen peas if desired.

4 generous servings

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