Thursday, September 15, 2011


I first tasted this delicious soup at a friend's house. She shared the recipe with me: white beans, chicken, onions, Rotel tomatoes, evaporated milk, 3 tablespoons ground cumin, and 1 tablespoon basil flakes. How's that for specific measurements! This friend is accustomed to cooking for crowds, and commented that the recipe can be expanded as needed by adding extra beans, chicken, broth, or whatever to make it stretch the ratios/proportions are pretty much up to you.

My girls asked if we could have this soup for supper one night this week, so a pot is simmering on the stove as I type. How nice of the weather to turn off cooler just in time for a steaming bowl of spicy soup! Smells so good - I love cumin.

Here's the basic recipe, with measurements I've created over time. (Although tonight, I'm out of evaporated milk - substituting cream instead. Also, instead of using canned white beans, I soaked a pound of dried white beans overnight and then cooked them earlier this afternoon before adding to the soup pot. If you like a little more heat, add an extra can of Rotel. Obviously, this recipe can handle your personal variations!)

Katherine's Bean and Chicken Soup

3 bone-in chicken breast halves
4 15-oz. cans of white beans (great northern beans)
1 can Rotel tomatoes with green chilis
2 large cans evaporated milk
2 medium onions, diced
3 Tbsp. ground cumin
1 Tbsp. dried basil leaves

Cover chicken breasts with water; bring to boil; reduce heat and simmer until tender. Cool. Remove meat from bones and shred; save the broth. In soup pot, saute onions in a little butter or oil until translucent. To softened onions, add chicken, reserved broth, white beans, and tomatoes. Simmer. About twenty minutes before serving, add cumin and basil. Stir evaporated milk into soup just before serving.

I love this soup because it is spicy and creamy - a wonderful combination. Usually, we have mostly liquid left over in the pot after we've dished out bowls of soup for dinner. I save the liquid and add another can of beans for my lunch the next day.

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