Sunday, October 16, 2011

From Soup to Blue Cheese

I love soup. I don't really need for it to be cool outside to enjoy a nice bowl of something delish. Howevs, because I only recently purchased a blender, I usually have to rely on canned soup to fulfill my cravings.

Before your head starts spinning with thoughts of "OMG the sodium in canned soup is sooooo high..." I only eat Health Valley No-Salt Added varieties. I particularly like the tomato, pea and minestrone. Yum.

But, now that I have a blender that I know how to use, a whole new world of homemade soup has opened up for me, and today was my first foray into this world. I made the soup for my lunch today, as well as lunch during the week (I usually pack unless I have plans/meetings).

Roasted Butternut Squash & Pear Soup
Source: Clean Eating (not sure which issue)

  • 2 firm pears, peeled, cored and chopped into 1-inch chunks
  • 1 small butternut squash, peeled, seeded and chopped into 1-inch chunks
  • 3 tsp olive oil
  • 1 small yellow onion, diced
  • Pinch of salt/pepper (skip)
  • 3 c. low-sodium chicken or vegetable broth (I use no-salt added)
  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In a roasting pan, combine pears and squash. Drizzle with 1.5 tsp oil, toss to coat, then spread out in bottom of pan. Roast uncovered for approx. 20 minutes until squash begins to brown and soften. Remove from oven and set aside (I roasted for approx. 40-45 mins).
  • In a large saucepan, heat remaining 1.5 tsp oil on medium. Add onion, sprinkle with salt/pepper. Saute until onion is soft and golden in color, approx. 3-4 mins. Add pear-squash mixture and broth, bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 15 mins.
  • Using a hand blender or upright blender, puree until smooth (about 45-60 seconds). If using an upright, work in small, cooled batches to avoid scalding.
  • Garnish with plain yogurt, toasted pumpkin seeds, nutmeg, if desired.
Yield: 6 servings (3/4 c.)
Per serving: Calories: 120; Fat: 4.5g; sat fat: 1g; carbs: 17g; fiber: 3g; protein: 4g; sodium: 65mg; chol: 0mg

Lots of beta-carotene in this bowl!
And for dinner...
Blue Cheese Stuffed Chicken with Buffalo Sauce
Source: Cooking Light (not sure which issue)

  • 1/2 c. crumbled blue cheese
  • 1 tbsp reduced-fat sour cream
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 1/8 tsp pepper (skip)
  • 4- 6oz. boneless chicken breasts
  • 1/4 c. flour
  • 2 tbsp 2% milk (used 1%)
  • 1 large egg, beaten slightly
  • 1 c. panko
  • 1.5 tbsp butter
  • 6 tbsp finely chopped, drained bottled roasted red bell peppers (skip - don't like)
  • 2 tsp water
  • 1 tsp Worcestershire sauce (skip - totally forgot to add this)
  • 1 tsp minced garlic
  • 1/2 tsp hot sauce
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • Combine first 4 ingredients in small bowl. Cut a horizontal slit through thickest part of the chicken to form a pocket. Stuff cheese mixture evenly into pockets.
  • Place flour in a shallow dish. Combine milk and egg in a shallow dish, stirring well. Place panko in a shallow dish. Dredge chicken in flour, then dip in egg mixture, then dredge in panko.
  • Heat large ovenproof skillet over med-high heat. Add 1 tbsp buter to pan, swirl until butter melts. Arrange chicken in pan, cook 4 mins or until browned. Turn chicken over; place skillet in oven and bake for 20 mins or until done (I browned both sides and placed in glass pan to bake).
  • While chicken bakes, combine remaining butter and ingredients except for hot sauce in a small saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a simmer, cook until butter melts. Stir in hot sauce. Serve with chicken.
Yield: 4 servings (1 chicken breast and about 4 tsp sauce)
Per serving: 392 calories; 12.9g fat (sat: 6.7; 3.4 mono; 1 poly); 47.4 protein; 18.5 carb; 175mg chol; 421mg sodium; 120mg calc

Served with Rice Selects Red Rice & Lentils
Soup: I think the soup turned out great. A little mealier than I thought due to the pears (maybe a teeny bit more pureeing next time?), but the flavor is great and it's hard to believe there's no cream because it is very smooth. Yum. Bonus - the baby ate some for dinner and also enjoyed!

Dinner: Although we all enjoyed the chicken, I thought the buffalo sauce topping was pretty bland (maybe because I missed an entire ingredient? D'oh) and I wouldn't have minded a bit more flavor overall. The hubs loves blue cheese, so he really enjoyed this meal. The kid liked the chicken and broccoli, did not like the rice/lentil combo.

Soup: Four Forks
Chicken: Two-Three Forks (Not bad and pretty tasty, but not super flavorful?? IDK)


  1. I've made a version of this soup before and you're right; DELISH!! I love this time of year - gets you back in the soup mood. W/ a vengeance! PS: I used to LOOOOOOOOVVEEE!!! (cannot be stated enough) buffalo SHRIMP of all things, from a local pizza joint back in Philly. This post just reminded me of them. SO now I will spend all day salivating, thinking of those amazingly delectable fried slices (pieces?) of heaven. With their kicky, spicy, tangy hot sauce coated fried crispy skins. And their plump shrimpy insides. Waaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhhhhh


  2. OMG you crack me up! You just need to figure out a low-sodim version of those shrimp deals!