Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Snow Day Recipe

I LOVE to cook, if it isn't obvious enough. Last year I was given a copy of Neiman Marcus Taste cookbook for Christmas. I have yet to actually use it, but seeing as today in Philadelphia there's 10 inches of snow on the ground and still climbing I thought I would spend some time in the kitchen. The recipe I've chosen, which was sooo difficult to pick cause EVERYTHING looks incredible, is Chicken Velvet Soup. In case anyone else out there feels the need for a hot creamy soup to warm you up today I wanted to share the recipe:

Chicken Velvet Soup

Intro: "Reading through Helen Corbitt's recipes from forty and fifty years ago, it's exciting to realize she was ahead of the paradigm shift that has occurred in American food. She paid considerable attention to texture and enjoyed creating layers of flavor, a goal sought by many of today's leading chefs. The velvety smoothness of this soup is a quality she also sought in her chocolate cake [ I'll be posting that recipe soon!]. When you taste the rich and creamy but simple-looking soup for the first time, you'll find it surprisingly light and refreshing."


1/4 cup olive oil
1 frying chicken, about 3 pounds, cut into pieces
1 large onion, finely chopped
1 large carrot, finely chopped
1 celery stalk, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves
1/2 cup dry white wine
3 chicken bouillon cubes, crumbled
3 sprigs fresh thyme
1 bunch fresh parsley (6 to 8 sprigs reserved for garnish)
2 dried bay leaves
8 black peppercorns
1 tablespoon all purpose flour
6 cups heavy cream
salt and freshly ground white pepper to taste


Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the chicken pieces and sear them, turning occasionally, 2 or 3 minutes on each side. Remove the chicken pieces and set aside. Add the onion, carrot, celery, and garlic to the same saucepan and saute for 3 or 4 minutes. Add the wine, bouillon, thyme, parsley, bay leaves, and peppercorns. Add the flour and thoroughly mix together. Return the seared chicken to the pan and mix well. Add the cream and bring the soup to a simmer. Reduce the heat to low and simmer the soup for about 1 hour, or until the chicken meat falls off the bone.

Strain the soup into a clean saucepan, reserving the chicken (discard the vegetables). When it is cool enough to handle, shred the chicken meat (discard the skin and bones) and add it to the soup base. Return the soup to a simmer and adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper. Ladle the soup into serving bowls and garnish with a sprig of fresh parsley.

Chefs Notes: the bouillon cubes add an element of flavor that cannot be replicated with stock or other ingredients. it's a truc, or "culinary trick", the great Paul Bocuse taught me."

Serves 6 to 8
Simplicity: + + +

Please leave comments so I know how well the recipe worked out and any adjustments!

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