Thursday, February 19, 2015

Creamy Swiss and Cauliflower Soup

I was planning to make some kind of potato chowder with leftover mashed potatoes but when I went
to retrieve them, I discovered my husband packed them in his after digging through the fridge and some pondering, I started throwing things in the slow cooker. What came out was DELICIOUS!!! My kids even powered through 3 bowls each! No process photos as it was not a planned blogging recipe.

1 large head of cauliflower, roughly chopped
1 red bell pepper, seeded and chopped
4 stalks celery, (hearts with leaves if possible), chopped
2 large carrots, chopped
1/2 large red onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, smashed
6 cups chicken broth

1/4 cup butter
1/3 cup flour (or 1/4 cup potato starch for gluten free)
2 cups milk
8 oz swiss cheese, shredded

2 cups diced chicken
6 slices thick cut bacon, cooked crisp and diced
salt and pepper to taste

In a 6 qt slow cooker place cauliflower, bell pepper, celery, carrots, onion, garlic and chicken broth.

Set to low for 4-6 hours until the veggies are very tender.
Transfer to blender(or use a handheld if you have it!) and process until all the veggies are pureed and pour back into slow cooker.

In a medium sauce pan over medium heat, melt butter, add flour and whisk until smooth (if using potato starch, whisk it into cold milk)

Whisk in milk, stirring and heating until thickened.

Add Swiss cheese and stir to melt completely.

Fold cheese sauce into the pureed veggie mixture and stir well.

Add chicken and bacon, season to taste.

Allow to simmer on low for 30-60 minutes more.

Top with croutons(I put some dried pepper blend on mine too,for some extra kick) and serve with crusty garlic bread , enjoy!

Honey Brined Pretzel Chicken Salad

I took several recipe ideas I had and threw them together for a nice salad meal. I opted to make and chill the chicken before adding it the salad, this would also be delicious with the chicken still warm.


1lb chicken breast
2 cups water
1/3 c honey
3 TB sea salt

1/2-3/4 cup honey mustard dressing (store bought is fine or see* for homemade)
8 oz pretzels, crushed fine

Carrots, diced
Tomatoes, diced
Broccoli, chopped
Zucchini, diced
---well just whatever veggies you like in a salad, this list is not set in stone

*Honey Mustard Dressing:
6 oz plain greek yogurt
1/4 cup mayo
1/4 cup honey
3 TB coarse grained mustard
salt to taste

Chicken Prep:
(Sorry no pics, camera battery died)

Mix water, honey and salt until well combined. Pour over chicken in a deep dish, allow to brine for at least 2-4 hours, longer if possible.

If you are using my honey mustard recipe mix all ingredients together now too so it can flavor mingle, there should be plenty for the chicken dipping and some for the salad dressing.

Drain and pat chicken dry, then in a ziplock bag, pound to 1/2 inch thickness

Preheat oven to 350
Grease a rimmed baking sheet

Pour honey mustard into 1 shallow dish.
Pour pretzels into another dish.

Dip chicken into honey mustard, then into pretzels, turning and pressing to coat well. Place on greased dish and repeat with remaining chicken.

Bake 25-30 minutes until a minimum internal temp of 165.

Allow to cool then slice and chill well.

Layer greens and whatever veggies you desire on a large plate, top with cold pieces of sliced chicken.
Top with honey mustard dressing