At the beginning of the year our house always seems to accumulate a large number of calendars. They arrive by mail, from stores, as gifts and some simply appear on my kitchen counter. Some are from garden centres, some are fundraisers, some are for grocery stores and there is ALWAYS one from the Dairy Farmer’s of Canada…always. I, inevitably, flip through the pages of the food related calendars, admire the pictures and the recipes. Rarely do I ever make the recipes. Why not?
This year a Foodland Ontario calendar happened to land on my counter and after perusing the pages I have decided to commit to making all the recipes inside. Again, why not? So, this year I will make the recipes that correspond with each month. If you happen to have the Foodland Ontario calendar, feel free to follow along…if you don’t you can find the recipes online here. I’ll share the recipes and the results on the first Monday of the month.
First up…Turkey Pasta Soup. Okay, this is one of those classic “best laid plans” situations. I planned on making the recipe exactly as it was written but, when my husband went to pick up the ingredients I got the phone call informing me that there was no turkey at any grocery store. Bah! Of course. So, I made my own minor substitution…chicken for turkey. Now, funnily enough the calendar recipe called for chicken stock – I happened to have some homemade turkey stock in the freezer – another substitution.
Chicken/Turkey Pasta Soup
(adapted from Foodland Ontario – January 2012)
1 tbsp vegetable oil
1 onion, diced
2 each carrots and parsnips, peeled and thinly sliced
1 stalk celery, thinly sliced
1 clove garlic, minced
1 cup sliced mushrooms
8 cups turkey stock
2 cups diced cooked chicken (we used 1 breast & 1 leg)
1 cup alphabet pasta
1/4 tsp dried thyme
2 tbsp finely chopped fresh parsley
1. In a large pot, heat oil over medium-high heat. Stir in onion, carrots, parsnips, celery and garlic.
2. Cook until vegetables are slightly softened, about 3 minutes.
3. Stir in mushrooms and cook for 1 minute.
4. Add broth, chicken, pasta, thyme and pepper, cover and bring to a boil.
5. Reduce heat and simmer until pasta is tender, about 20 minutes.
6. Serve sprinkled with parsley.
This was my first attempt at making homemade soup! I have mastered gazpacho…but that’s a cold soup…not the same. This soup was delicious. I served it along side a freshly baked loaf of my Irish Soda bread, with lots of butter. The best part is that I have popped the left overs in the freezer which means we can have homemade chicken/turkey pasta soup at a moments notice. And, did I mention my kids liked it too. Throw in some alphabet shaped pasta and kids will eat anything! What’s on the menu in February? Pork and vegetable stovetop stew…I’m ready!