Spicy Chicken Soup for Fall
Posted by Degan on September 25th, 2011
It’s cold in the mornings now, and the streetlights are still on when I walk to the gym. It’s not the kind of cold that you have to put your shoulder into, coat zipped up to your ears, but you can feel the potential. In more than one courtyard there are leaves on the ground. These are the kind of details that feel mundane to report but are really the meat of our days. My grandfather lived in a log cabin in the woods until he died at 97. He would send me letters that were full of details like, “there is frost on the driveway now,” or “the deer still come into the yard in the morning but the geese are all gone.” Information that was meaningful enough to him to put to paper to share with in the city. I can picture him standing at the kitchen window, looking out over the changing scenery that he knew so well and maybe opening a tin of soup.
This has been a couple of stressful weeks. Work has been full bore (in a good way) and it’s been so busy that there’s hardly been time to cook. I don’t feel like I’ve been aware of my surroundings but the other day I just wanted to come home, put a pot of soup on the stove and settle in. It was raining outside so I put on my “Rainy day music” playlist and had some of this spicy peanut soup and tea for lunch. Cozy.
Spicy Chicken Soup
Adapted from this recipe at Epicurious.
1lb of chicken breast, cut into cubes
1 Tbsp hot sauce. I like a smoky chipotle sauce for this soup but even a habanero will do.
4 cups chicken broth
1/3 cup creamy peanut butter
2 Tbsp tomato paste
5 tbsp butter
1.5 cups chopped onion
1 Tbsp flour
1 (large) can diced tomatoes
1 can chick peas
(I’ve made this soup many times and it’s a bit of a gypsy soup – you can throw almost anything else you like into it).
Combine chicken cubes and hot sauce in a bowl and toss to coat well. Add salt and pepper and toss again. In another bowl, whisk chicken broth, peanut butter, and tomato paste. Melt butter in large pot over medium-high heat. Add chopped onion and sauté until tender. Add chicken and sauté about 3 minutes more. Sprinkle with flour and cook 1 minute, stirring occasionally. Add broth mixture, chick peas and tomatoes to the pot and simmer until the chicken is cooked through and flavors blend – about 5 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper and more hot sauce. Serve.