This is it, my first post as a regular member of Mystery Lovers' Kitchen. I've been delighted in the past to contribute a guest post but now, I'll be posting every second Thursday, opposite Lucy Burdette. The first in my brand new series, the Dinner Club Mysteries, will hit the bookshelves this summer on July 6th. I can hardly wait! And just to be a part of those double-ID set, I write the Ashton Corners Book Club Mysteries as Erika Chase. Both series are from Berkley Prime Crime. Enough about me! Let's get down to the fun stuff, the recipes!
I'm a great believer in just throwing together whatever is left over in the fridge but you have to start with a stock. And I've found the most amazing chicken stock starter ever! Truly. Such a flavorful start to any homemade soup and it tastes even better than stock from boiling up the bones. This is it and if you can't find it on your local shelves, I feel for you.
So, starting with this and I go by the suggestions on the jar, adding 1 tsp. of mix to 8 oz. of boiling water. Of course, you'll want larger quantities of both. Then, just go nuts and have fun with whatever you want to add.
This time, I added barley which I'd already cooked, to the broth. And then, out came the celery, carrots and onions. And, since fresh peas aren't yet on the shelves, some I added some frozen ones to the mix.
And what's chicken soup without the chicken? Sometimes I'll saute fresh chicken breasts and cut them up. But this time, I used frozen chicken breast strips, diced them and just threw them in the pot without defrosting.
I love playing with various spices, experimenting with flavors. Each time it's a different combination but for this I used fresh rosemary, and dried dill, thyme leaves, turmeric (something I add to almost every recipe because of it's natural anti-inflammatory properties), a touch of Himalayan salt, freshly ground pepper, and some hot chili flakes.
It all goes into the pot and after a quick boil for five minutes, it simmers for another twenty. How easy was that! And, after adjusting a the pepper content, a hearty and tasty chicken barley soup to usher out winter!
To celebrate my first day with the Mystery Lovers' Kitchen gang, I'm giving away any book of your choice from the Ashton Corners Book Club Mysteries. There are five in the series -- A Killer Read, Read and Buried, Cover Story, Book Fair and Foul, and, Law and Author. Just leave a comment and using my totally unbiased winner-choosing method, will draw a name at the end of today. Be sure to leave your email so that I can contact you.
To pre-order, click here
Writing as Erika Chase -- the Ashton Corners Book Club Mystery series are available on-line or at your favorite bookstore.
Love to hear from you at my Facebook author page and
on Twitter @LWiken
Also appearing at www.killercharacters.com
Visit Erika at www.erikachase.com
at my Facebook author page
and on Twitter @erika_chase.