Thursday, October 13, 2011

Willing on the *Colder* Weather

I don't know about y'all, but I'm *kind of* ready for colder weather.  Now, when I say colder, I really mean somewhere in the upper 70's to low 80's.  That's just about as cold as I can take it.  For real.  The weather here in Texas has been less than cool these last few months, so I decided to make some soup the other night to will on the colder weather.  All I have to say is, 'who the heck cares if it's cold or not?!'  This is the kinda soup that's good in ANY kind of weather!!! 

Italian Chicken Soup

from The Pioneer Woman

1 box Ditalini pasta {I used the Barilla brand}

1 tbsp. olive oil

4 chicken breasts

8 cups chicken broth {this equals out to two big boxes of chicken broth}

1 medium onion, diced

2 green peppers, diced

2 stalks of celery, diced

2 fresh jalapenos, diced

1 tbsp. olive oil

1 can {28. oz} whole tomatoes, diced

2 cups heavy cream

1/3 cup olive oil

4 tbsp. minced fresh oregano

salt & pepper, to taste

Parmesan Cheese shavings, as desired


Alright y'all.  Tell me this doesn't look easy enough?!


Now that we've got that outta the way, you'll definitely need to be prepared for this one.  There's a lot of "setting aside" goin' on in this recipe, so you'll need to be ready for that.  And make sure all your dishes/pots/pans are cleaned and ready to be used because you'll be using several for this one. 

First up, cook your pasta according to package directions.  I used the whole box of Ditalini, just incase you're wondering.  Drain pasta, rinse, and return to pot.  Toss in 1 tbsp. of olive oil and mix well.  Set this aside.


Now let's go ahead and cook your chicken.  The Pioneer Woman used a whole fryer chicken for her recipe, but all I had handy was 4 chicken breasts.  Obviously, I used what was available...and cheapest!...for this one.  You'll wanna boil your chicken in 8 cups of chicken broth, so make sure you have a pot/pan big enough for all the juiciness.  Bring the chicken to a boil and then let it simmer {covered} for about 30 minutes.  Now, go 'head and turn off the heat and let it sit all it's wonderful juiciness...covered...for another 30 minutes.  Then remove the chicken from the broth and shred.  Make sure to set aside the broth because you'll need that for the soup.


Now let's get to dicin', shall we?!

Chop up your bell peppers, jalapenos, celery, and onion.  Ohmiword.  That's a seriously salivating sight.


While you're choppin', open up those tomatoes and dice those up, too.  At this point in the game, you're probably all, "Seriously?!  Chopping a can of whole tomatoes?!  I'm skippin' that step and buying the can of diced tomatoes next time."  Ummmm...yeah, I was totally thinking that, too.  But after reading a little bit more about the difference between diced and whole, it sounds like the whole tomatoes are MUCH more flavorful than the diced tomatoes, so don't take the shortcut.  Unless you like flavorless tomatoes.  Then go right ahead.   Once your tomatoes are nice and chopped, return them to their can with all their juices.  Set it aside.


Now it's time to chop up the oregano.  I didn't have 4 tablespoons worth of fresh oregano, so I improvised and added a mixture of both dried and fresh.  Saute this in a little pan with a tablespoon of olive oil.  YUM.MO.  For real. 


You won't wanna saute for too long, just give it enough time to start makin' your house smell somethin' fantastic.

Saute the peppers, onion, celery, and jalapenos in a tablespoon of olive oil until tender {about 10ish minutes}. 


Now add the broth, chicken, and tomates {with all the tomato juice} to the pan.  Bring to a boil and the reduce the heat to simmer.


My pan wasn't big enough to add the pasta, SO I turned off the heat and added the broth mixture to the pasta {in the pasta pot}.  Then add the heavy cream and oregano and stir until well combined.  {You won’t need the heat for that part, even if you’re adding the pasta to the same pot!}


Ooooooh.  my.  GOODNESS.

Don't forget to add the shaved parmesan.  MY.WORD.  That just takes it to a whole other level.  A level of soupy, cheesy decadence. 


If this doesn't will on the cooler temps, I don't know what will!!!  But seriously...I'd eat this soup in any weather.  On a boat or with a goat.  Here or there or ANYWHERE :)  And I’m pretty much thinkin’ you will, too.  My word.  That Pioneer Woman is a dang genius!!



  1. ohhhh myy goodness .. this looks Ah-mazing!

  2. This is going on the menu for the week!

  3. :-)))
    I ADORE your blog, and I follow you with so much interest but... belive me, I'm italian, I live in Italy and this is not an italian soup :-)))
    This is a good and simple recipe:

    1 breast chicken
    2 potatoes
    6 spoons of rice

    Boil chicken breast with parsley, potatoes (cut them in cubes) and salt. Add rice. When rice in ready serve the soup. Very easy, light, and really italian :-))))


  4. Yours looks much creamier than hers does. I love all the recipes I've tried from Pioneer woman and can't wait to try this one! Thanks for sharing.

  5. I made this tonight and it was so so yummy.

  6. An easy way to 'chop' whole canned tomatoes is to open the can, grab your kitchen shears, and cut the tomatoes into pieces right inside the can. Quick, easy and no-mess!

  7. Love your blog so much! This recipe is delicious, I've made it a few times since finding it.