“To place different elements alternately” (i.e. Sandwich…)

Sandwiches. They come in all shapes, sizes and flavors. Fancy little tea sandwiches and big honkin’ heroes (sorry my New England friends, I mean grinders!), ooey gooey grilled cheese and simple avocado with hot sauce on toast. They can be the perfect accompaniment or the star player. I don’t truly believe anyone who says they don’t like sandwiches, I think it’s more likely they just haven’t tried the right one.

With all the soup I’ve been making lately it should come as no surprise that sandwiches have also been on the menu. So much so in fact that my husband bought me a panini press for Christmas. (Yes a rather self-serving gift but, since I got him a subscription to a wine club I think we’re even!)

One of my favorite sandwiches (with or without the side of soup) happens to be curried chicken salad. Sure it’s a bit more involved than say a simple ham and cheese, but it’s oh so good. And since this recipe makes a considerable amount of chicken salad you’ll have plenty leftover for more lunches, dinners and a few “I’m hungry what’s in the fridge that I can eat while standing in front of it” forkfuls during the week.

Curried Chicken Salad
I love this chicken salad between a couple of slices of bread, on a bed of salad greens or even served on crackers as an appetizer.

sandwich2

4 cups shredded poached chicken (see recipe below)
1/2 cup celery, diced small
1/3 cup onion, diced small
2 tbsp. finely chopped fresh parsley
1/2 an apple, diced small
1 cup light mayonnaise
1 tsp. lemon juice
4 tsp. Madras curry powder (hot or mild)
1/4 cup golden raisins
1 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. ground black pepper

  1. In a medium bowl, toss together the shredded chicken, celery, onion, parsley and apple. Set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the mayonnaise, lemon juice, curry powder, raisins, salt and pepper. Add the chicken and gently mix to combine. Serve on multi-grain bread or refrigerate until ready to use.

To Poach Chicken:
10 sprigs parsley
3 sprigs fresh thyme
1 leek quartered
10 baby carrots
2 stalks celery, halved
1 1/2 lb. boneless/skinless chicken breasts (about 3)
1 quart chicken broth

  1. Place the parsley, thyme, onion, carrots, celery, and chicken breasts in a medium saucepan. Cover with broth and bring to just a boil. Reduce the heat to very low and cover. Poach the chicken for 20 minutes or until firm to the touch. Remove the pan from the heat, uncover and cool the chicken in the poaching liquid for 30 minutes.
  2. Transfer the chicken to a cutting board and allow cool the remainder of the way. (Reserve the poaching liquid for a later use and eat the carrots sprinkled with a bit of salt, they’ll be delicious). When the meat is cool enough to handle use a fork to shred it.

*adapted from food network

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Whatsa’ kid know!— Carrot & Parsnip Soup

I know I frequently post soup recipes, more than any other type of recipe in fact, but you see I really like soup. And my daughter; who orders Won-Ton soup if we get Chinese and Pasta Fagioli if we get pizza; really likes soup. So I make soup, a lot of soup!

Last weekend my little love and I were discussing soup and she suggested I make carrot soup (she loves carrots almost as much as she loves soup). Hmmmm, I think my girl was on to something. How about carrot and parsnip soup? (A natural pairing after all.) How about carrot and parsnip soup with a little curry and ginger? (A recipe was slowly beginning to take shape in my mind.) How about carrot and parsnip soup with a little curry and ginger and some coconut milk to round things out? (Oh yeah baby, I think we had the makings of something terrific here!)

So my girl and I headed to the store for ingredients and jumped right into our slicing, dicing and measuring. “This is going to be soooo good!” she told me. I had to agree. We sautéed, simmered and pureed and soon sat down to steaming bowls of Carrot & Parsnip Soup. “Um… I don’t like it,” she said. “But it’s delicious,” I say. Try it again!” [Grimace. Gag. Frantically motions for her glass of milk to wash the offending soup down.] “I don’t like it,” she says again. “Maybe next time you could just make Pasta Fagioli…”

Curried Carrot & Parsnip Soup
Even if my lovey didn’t like it, I still maintain that this soup is delicious. I like to have it for lunch with a couple of slices of buttered toast; it’s the perfect soup for dunking.

carrot soup

1 1/2 tbsp. butter
2 tbsp. olive oil
1 medium onion, roughly chopped
1 1/2 lbs. parsnips, roughly chopped
1 1/2 lbs. carrots, roughly chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
3 tbsp. freshly grated ginger
3 tsp. Madras curry powder
4 cups (32 oz.) chicken broth
1/2 tsp. pink salt
1/4 tsp. ground black pepper
1 14 oz. can lite coconut milk

  1. Heat butter and oil in a Dutch oven over medium-low heat. Add the onion, garlic, ginger and curry powder and cook 7-10 minutes or until the onion is translucent, stirring frequently.
  2. Add the chopped parsnips, carrots and broth and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and allow to simmer 45-50 minutes or until the vegetables are cooked through.
  3. Use an immersion blender to process the soup to a smooth consistency. Add the coconut milk, season with salt and pepper and serve.