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Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Turkey Leftovers--Turkey Soup

If your family is like mine, the turkey leftovers are the best part of the week after Thanksgiving.
I always cook an extra turkey--it's inexpensive and cooked turkey can be used in any recipe that uses cooked chicken. 

Tonight we ate this soup, a perfect end to a cold Montana day. Yum!
Mediterranean Chicken, Bean & Pasta Soup

2 tsp olive oil
1 large green onion (or a couple of smaller ones), minced
2 medium carrots, cut into thin half-circles
2 large celery stalks, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1 can (28 oz.) whole tomatoes, finely chopped, including juices
5 cups low-sodium chicken broth
2 bay leaves
2 cups chopped, cooked chicken (or turkey!)
1 can (15 oz.) cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
1/2 cup ditalini (small, short pasta tubes)--tonight I used some leftover wild rice in place of pasta
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh parsley--I used 2 Tablespoons dehydrated parsley
8 fresh basil leaves, thinly sliced-I used a scant teaspoon dried basil
Grated Parmesan cheese

Heat olive oil in a large saucepan set over medium-high heat. Add shallot, carrots, and celery. Saute until the vegetables are beginning to soften, 2 to 3 minutes.

Add chopped tomatoes with juices, chicken broth, and bay leaves. Bring to a boil, then lower heat to medium-low, partially cover, and simmer for 20 minutes.

Uncover the soup, remove the bay leaves, add cooked chicken, beans, and pasta. Increase the heat to medium-high and cook until the pasta is al dente, about 10 minutes (I just added my pre-cooked leftover rice at this point). If you are using dried parsley and basil, add for the final 5 minutes.  If you are using fresh, add at the end.

Garnish with grated Parmesan cheese. Serve.

Serves 6 to 8.

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