Saturday, September 22, 2018

#Creamy Chicken and Wild Rice Soup by @Denise Swanson

My husband and I eat soup all year long, but now that it is officially Autumn, I thought that I would share my favorite chicken soup recipe. It’s a slightly thickened, creamy chicken soup with a finishing taste of smoky bacon. For convenience, I use precooked wild rice, but if you can’t find it, you can substitute 2 cups of your own cooked wild rice or a package of precooked brown rice. If you’re in a time crunch you can use rotisserie chicken, but we don’t like the taste so I grill my own.
5 bacon slices, chopped (I use turkey bacon)
1 cup chopped onion
1 cup thinly matchstick carrots
1/2 cup thinly sliced celery
1 diced orange bell pepper
1 tsp. thyme
8-oz presliced cremini mushrooms
4 garlic cloves, minced
4 cups unsalted chicken stock
1 cup water
4 cups lightly packed chopped curly kale (I use the whole package)
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 skinless, boneless chicken breast, seasoned, grilled, and shredded
1 (8-oz.) package precooked wild rice (I use Aldis store brand)
1 cup fat free half-and-half
1/3 cup all-purpose flour

Season and grill chicken breast, then shred. Put aside.

Heat a Dutch oven over medium-high. Add bacon to pan and cook 4 minutes or until crisp. Remove bacon from pan with a slotted spoon, reserving drippings. 

Add onion, carrot, pepper, and celery to drippings in pan and sauté 3 minutes. 

Add thyme, mushrooms, and garlic and sauté 5 minutes. Add stock and 1 cup water, bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer 8 minutes. 

Add kale, salt, and pepper and cook 3 minutes. Stir in chicken and rice.

Combine half-and-half and flour in bowl, stirring with a whisk. Stir into soup; cook 2 minutes or until thickened. 

Top with bacon.

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The chips are down in Scumble River

School psychologist Skye Denison-Boyd had hoped that her maternity leave would be at least a little relaxing, but when she and her husband, Wally, meet with the priest to discuss their newborn twins' christening, an explosion at the nearby bowling alley rocks the rectory. And although the business was closed at the time of the blast, there's a body inside.

As police chief, Wally is inevitably drawn into the investigation, which seems to indicate that foul play is afoot again in Scumble River, and Skye can't help but do a bit of her own sleuthing. But the clues come fast and furious, ranging from an odd new stranger in town to animosity toward the gambling machines that had recently been installed at the bowling alley, and Skye finds herself wondering if this could be the puzzle that stumps her for good.

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Right when Dani thinks she's hit a dead-end in her career, she unexpectedly inherits an enormous old house in a quaint college town. This gives her the perfect opportunity to pursue her true passion―cooking! So Dani opens Chef-to-Go, preparing delicious, ready-made meals for hungry students attending the nearby university, as well as providing personal chef services and catering events for the local community. To help support her new business, she opens her home to a few students, renting them rooms and becoming almost like a big sister figure in their lives.

But just as Dani is relishing her sweet new life, the friend of one of her boarders is murdered, and Dani becomes one of the primary suspects! She'll have to scramble to clear her name and save her business before the killer reappears―perhaps to silence the new chef forever.

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Take one smoking-hot top chef who thinks food should be a sensual adventure, add a venture capitalist who has struggled with her weight since she was a teenager, and mix well. Is this a recipe that sizzles, or is he just another craving she must resist?

* * *

Deanna Sloan has worked too hard, dieting herself from a chubby teenager to a sleek businesswoman, to give in to her hunger now. Enduring four years as the target of her high school classmates’ cruelty taught her that only three things matter—power, money, and looks.

Leaving her small town behind, shedding the excess pounds, and obtaining a job with a six-figure salary are all steps in the right direction. However, in order to keep on target, she needs to outshine the other twenty venture capitalist associates at her new firm, maintain her weight loss, and be prepared to double-cross anyone who gets in her way. Walk in the park, right?

Wrong! Her first assignment is an investment appraisal of one of Chicago’s top chefs. Nico Thorne has come to her firm for the seed money to open his own restaurant. He is smoking hot and just a glimpse of his navy blue eyes in a photo clouds Deanna’s brain and dampens her panties. Will the flesh-and-blood man make her dissolve into a puddle of mindless lust that will derail her fast track to success?

Like Deanna, Nico’s past drives his present choices. He hates his father for using his mother’s social status to further his career, then abandoning her. As a teenager, Nico’s anger at his father resulted in a hair-trigger temper and a vow never to fall in love. Although Nico may have learned to control his demons, he still avoids women who even hint at wanting anything deeper than a few nights of uncommitted fun.

That is until he sees Deanna. Her cinnamon curls and soft green eyes totally captivate him. As they spend more and more time together, Nico’s determination to keep their relationship casual dissolves and he realizes that she might be his amore mio. But will he be able to convince Deanna that he’s the one for her?

Deanna fights her attraction to Nico, fearful that giving in will mean the loss of both her figure and her job. Can Nico overcome a lifetime of distrust? Can Deanna embrace life—imperfections and all?

Publisher’s warning: This book contains sensual consummated love scenes.

COMING November 6


Series description:

First in Denise Swanson’s new Delicious contemporary romance series. All books are complete with no cliffhangers and a guaranteed HEA!

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  1. The sounds and looks delicious. Must put wild rice on my shopping list!

  2. This is my favorite soup!! Sounds delicious ❤❤

    1. It really is and super easy to make, as well as healthy!

  3. Wild rice is rather magical. It's a great addition.
    The kale adds a pretty color (and crunch and taste).

    1. You're right. I tried subbing brown rice and it wasn't the same.