Need Soup Suggestion
I'm taking a soup to a potluck tomorrow. I'm open to any catagory of soup as long as it is popular to masses. The kicker is that it will be sitting in a slow cooker on warm for a few hours, and served at various times during those few hours. So it can't be anything that will get mushy or disintegrate after sitting. I can make it ahead of time, so it doesn't have to be a recipe that must be actually cooked in a slow cooker.
I would love any suggestions!
Ironically, I made a soup for my office's potluck just last Friday and I made the following soup which sat in a slow cooker all day... It went over like gang-busters and I only had one bowl left as left-overs.
Moroccon Garbanzo and Lentil Soup:
Split pea. I love yellow split pea- it's just a bit different than green pea.... a bit of chopped smoked ham or bacon , bay leaf, marjoram, thyme, paprika and sub half chicken stock for the water volume.
Start with a base of sauted small-chopped carrots, onion and celery. Dump everything in a slow cooker and let it go for a few hours on low.
I've had huge success with Potluck potato soup, which is essentially your best cream of potato soup recipe (cooked down in chicken stock, with celery and onions and a trace of garlic; pureed and finished with cream; thickened with a light slurry if necessary.) I made it in the crockpot and kept it for hours on low in the pot and it got better and better. I also brought along a compartmented snack tray that I loaded up with garnishes for people to garnish their own soup: cubed tomatoes, shredded cheese, sliced green onion, cubed ham, crumbled bacon, blanched broccoli, croutons, shredded carrots and the like. You could vary this theme by making a cumin/chile accented potato soup and setting out Mexican-style garnishes; crema, queso fresco, black beans, shredded pepper Jack cheese, chopped onion, cilantro and lime, crumbled tortilla chips, etc.
You can also branch out on the Mexican theme by making a tortilla soup: Chicken stock, onions, garlic, serrano and pasilla pepper, cilantro and cumin, salt and pepper for stock; corn and black beans and shredded chicken added to soup and seasoned with above plus a shot of lime. Again, separate garnishes: tortilla strips or chips, shredded or crumbled cheese, crema, chopped cilantro, more lime, pumpkin seeds, cubed tomatoes, shaved Spanish onion.
This next one is sooooo good, but it does require a cheat:
Chicken Florentine Soup - serves 8
2 c. uncooked penne
1/2 lb boneless skinless chicken thighs and
1/2 lb " " " breasts, both diced in 1-inch cubes, OR
meat pulled from 2 1/2-3 lb. rotisserie chicken. (Not gonna lie. Wouldn't be prudent. I use rotisserie all the time for time saving...)
10 oz. prebagged spinach, chopped
2 jars roasted red sweet peppers, drained, sliced
1 T. chopped fresh rosemary
1 minced garlic clove
1/2 t. pepper
2 T. butter
3-4 c. chicken broth (canned is okay for this)
1 1/2-2 c. jarred, best-quality Alfredo sauce
6 T. prep. pesto
1/2 c. toasted pine nuts
Shredded parmesan cheese
Cook pasta until just under al dente. Meanwhile in lg. saucepan saute the chicken in a bit of butter or olive oil. Add rest of ingredients up to pepper, and stir till spinach is just wilting. Stir in the broth, Alfredo sauce and pesto and heat through. Transfer to a crockpot and keep on low warm. Taste for s&p; this might need just a squeeze of lemon juice or a shake of salt to correct it. (If using rotisserie chicken just follow above recipe without browning the chicken - add it at the last.)
This is the recipe I was referring to:
I didn't follow this recipe exactly, however, since I didn't want to wait 12 hours for my soup last weekend. I ended up using 3 or 4 different recipes as reference material because I wasn't doing mine exactly like any of them (some used canned beans and a short cooking time, others used dry beans but soaked overnight, etc). I tend to do this in the kitchen a lot of the time: take bits and pieces of several recipes and combine them into something 'new'.
I ended up doing the 'fast soak' method of cooking beans: put in boiling water for 5 minutes then turn off the heat and let sit for an hour then drain. They ended up needing about another 1.5 hours of cooking in the soup to get tender.
In any event, there are many variations of this soup and they are all usually pretty good. Very hearty for a cold winter day.
This is from allrecipes. It is delicious. I will post the recipe as is and then tell you about some minor changes I made:
Slow Cooker Chicken Tortilla Soup
1 pound shredded, cooked chicken
1 (15 ounce) can whole peeled tomatoes,
1 (10 ounce) can enchilada sauce
1 medium onion, chopped
1 (4 ounce) can chopped green chile
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 cups water
1 (14.5 ounce) can chicken broth
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 bay leaf
1 (10 ounce) package frozen corn
1 tablespoon chopped cilantro
7 corn tortillas
1. Place chicken, tomatoes, enchilada sauce, onion, green chiles, and garlic into a slow cooker. Pour in water and chicken broth, and season with cumin, chili powder, salt, pepper, and bay leaf. Stir in corn and cilantro. Cover, and cook on Low setting for 6 to 8 hours or on High setting for 3 to 4 hours.
2. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C).
3. Lightly brush both sides of tortillas with oil. Cut tortillas into strips, then spread on a baking sheet.
4. Bake in preheated oven until crisp, about 10 to 15 minutes. To serve, sprinkle tortilla strips over soup.
I threw uncooked frozen chicken breast in the crockpot...worked great! Once they were cooked, I removed, shredded and added back in. I also added a can of black beans (drained and rinsed). I did not do this but next time, I would add some fresh jalapeno to kick it up a notch. To keep things simple, I used pre-made corn tortilla strips. Finally, I used all chicken broth versus the water. I also topped the individual bowls wit a squeeze of lime juice and some shredded monterey jack. This is an easy and delicious soup.
Pasta Fagioli -- maybe even without the pasta if you're concerned about it overcooking.
1 TB olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
4-5 cloves garlic, chopped
1 pound ground beef (95% fat-free)
5 carrots, sliced ¼” thick
3 stalks of celery, sliced ¼” thick
1 can (15 ounces) petite diced tomatoes
1 can (15 ounces) red kidney beans, rinsed and drained
1 can (15 ounces) cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
48 ounces fat-free chicken broth
3-4 TB dried oregano
1 TB dried thyme leaves
24-32 ounces meatless pasta sauce (homemade is best)
Crushed red pepper flakes
Parmesan cheese rinds (optional)
1 cup dry ditalini (small tube) pasta
Heat olive oil in a large pot. Add onions and sauté until wilted. Add garlic and sauté until fragrant. Add beef. Cook, breaking up, until no pink remains. Add carrots, celery, tomatoes, beans, broth, oregano, thyme, pasta sauce and cheese rinds (if using). Simmer, covered, until carrots are tender, about 20 minutes. Taste and add salt, pepper and crushed red pepper flakes to taste. Add pasta and cook until al dente.
Serve with freshly grated Parmesan cheese and a sprinkle of crushed red peppers.
A local grocery sells a Soup Pack including potato, turnip, carrot, greens, onion, dill, etc., which you cut up, add stock to, and place in the slow cooker. Fairly inexpensive and nutritious. My wife made soup with it the other day and it tasted pretty good (although on re-runs the next day I sneaked some sausage and beans into my bowl to "improve" it.)