Hearty Italian Chicken and Autumn Veggie Soup

Hearty Italian Chicken and Autumn Veggie Soup, and Gratitude for the Simple Pleasures

Each bite of a hearty Italian chicken and autumn veggie soup contains little bursts of fall; it contains little tastes of the very best elements that it produces.

Serving Size: 4


• 2 skin-on and bone-in split chicken breasts
• Canola oil
• Salt
• Black pepper
• 3 heads garlic
• 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
• 1 onion, finely diced
• 2 carrots, peeled and finely diced
• 2 parsnips, peeled and finely diced
• 2 ribs celery, finely diced
• 2 cups butternut squash, peeled and diced into small, bite-size cubes
• 2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
• Pinch red pepper flakes
• 1 (6 ounce) can tomato paste
• 4 – 4 ½ cups hot chicken stock
• Small piece of parmesan rind, optional (*see note below)
• 2 cups Tuscan kale, chopped into small pieces
• ¼ cup fresh basil leaves, julienned
• 1 tablespoon chopped flat-leaf parsley
• Gnocchi, cooked according to package instructions, and held warm with a bit of oil drizzled in
• Grated fresh parmesan, for garnish
• Warm rustic bread, on the side

  • -Preheat oven to 400°, and line a baking sheet with foil.
  • -Place the split chicken breasts on the baking sheet, and drizzle them with a little oil, and a couple of good pinches of salt and pepper.
  • -Cut the tops off of the heads of garlic, drizzle each head with a little oil, plus a pinch of salt and pepper, and wrap each head in a small piece of foil; place on the baking sheet next to the chicken.
  • -Roast the chicken, along with the garlic, for 45 minutes; then allow both to cool until they can be handled.
  • -Once they are cooled, shred the chicken, and set it aside; then, squeeze the roasted garlic from the papers, and using your knife or a fork, make the cloves into a paste; set the paste aside for a moment.
  • -Place a medium-large pot over medium to medium-high heat, and drizzle in about 2-3 tablespoons of the oil, plus add in the tablespoon of butter; once melted together, add in the onion and allow it sweat for about 3-4 minutes, until translucent and softened.
  • -To the onion add the roasted garlic “paste”, and stir it in to combine.
  • -Next, add in the diced carrots, parsnips, celery and butternut squash and stir to combine; add in the Italian seasoning, plus a pinch or two of salt and black pepper, and the red pepper flakes, and stir to incorporate.
  • -Add in the tomato paste and stir, and allow it to cook with the vegetables for about 2-3 minutes, or until the “raw” flavor of it is cooked out of it.
  • -Next, add in the chicken stock and stir, followed by the piece of parmesan rind, if using; cover with a lid and simmer very gently on low for about 20-22 minutes, stirring occasionally (especially if you add the parmesan rind so that it doesn’t stick to the bottom), or until the veggies are tender.
  • -Turn off the heat, and remove the parmesan rind, if using; add in the kale and stir to incorporate it, and allow it wilt into the soup for a few minutes; then, finish the soup by adding in the shredded chicken, the basil and the parsley (also, check your seasoning at this point to see if any additional salt/pepper is needed).
  • -To serve, add about ¼ cup or so of cooked gnocchi to your bowl, and ladle some of the stew over top; garnish with some grated parmesan, if desired, and serve with warm bread.


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