Chicken Tortellini Soup Recipe
Although for breakfast and supper, I usually have at least 6-8 people around my table, at lunch time it's often just myself, or at most my Dad and brother join me during their lunchtimes. This leaves me either digging for leftovers, or actually skipping lunch, since cooking for just one is no fun at all. Even worse - when I run out for fast food. That stuff will kill you. Not good.
One of my resolutions lately was to stop skipping meals, and to avoid fast food at (almost) any cost. On the other hand I really don't want to put too much time into lunch, so I've come up with several quick meals that can come together quickly. One of my favorites is soup - with a good homemade chicken broth and a few ingredients, you have an endless variety of flavor profiles. Pick a starch (potatoes, pasta, rice), a protein (chicken, pork, beef, cheese, seafood) and some veggies (onion, garlic, celery, carrot, bell pepper, peas, spinach), and some herbs (oregano, thyme, rosemary, parsley, cilantro) and you're good to go.
In this case I built the soup around store bought cheese tortellini - and the result was fantastic. The broth is key - so if you must use canned or boxed broth, be careful to taste and adjust the seasonings. You may need to increase the herbs to get rid of the 'canned' taste. Or throw in a bouillon cube to enrich it some. This one works for lunch - but it's just as good for supper time. A little garlic bread and some green veggies and the meal is done!
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- ½ small onion, diced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 6 cups chicken broth, preferably homemade
- 1 (14.5 ounce) can Italian-style stewed tomatoes
- 1 teaspoon oregano
- 1 teaspoon thyme
- 1 teaspoon parsley
- Pinch red pepper flakes
- Kosher salt and black pepper to taste
- 10 ounces spinach, rinsed and chopped
- 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
- 1 (16 ounce) package prepared cheese tortellini, thawed
1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Cook tortellini according to package directions. Set aside.
2. In the meantime, in a large Dutch oven, heat olive oil over medium heat. Saute onion and garlic until fragrant and onion becomes slightly translucent.
3. Add broth, tomatoes, oregano, thyme, parsley and red pepper. Bring to a boil, and reduce to a simmer. Taste, and adjust for kosher salt and black pepper. Add fresh spinach, and simmer for 5 minutes. You can also toss in cubed cooked chicken, or a handful of fresh or frozen peas - just add these with the tortellini and allow them to heat through.
4. Add tortellini to the chicken broth, and simmer another minute, or until just heated through.
5. Serve with fresh Parmesan.
A couple of easy changes - feel free to substitute vegetable broth for the chicken broth. You can also add small cubed carrot or celery, just saute these other vegetables with the onion and garlic. Also fabulous is leftover sauteed Italian sausage, or meatballs of any kind. This lovely little base soup is very adaptable!
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