Not many things are better than your mom’s homemade cookin’. Family dinners are comfort. It brings you back to the beginning years, before life got crazy, before you had responsibilities, and before life turned into reality. Now that my parents are living in the South, I can have those family dinners again. Before I left Tuesday, we did just that, a family dinner.
Double the comfort: cooked by mom and warm hearty soup.
Notice I said “cooked” by mom. But the original recipe credit goes to the fabulous Ree Drummond, The Pioneer Woman. Her recipe was fantastic and even better the next day. My mom whipped this soup up in about an hour. It isn’t one of those soup recipes that need all day to cook. It can be a last minute fix. The flavors were powerful and all the seasonings were spot on. You weren’t left going “it’s missing this” or “it has too much of this”, there was nothing to complain about.
Homemade Chicken & Rice Soup
Ingredients *3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts *Olive oil, for drizzling, *1/4 teaspoon ground thyme, *Salt and freshly, *ground black pepper, *2 tablespoons butter, *3 stalks celery, finely diced, *2 carrots, finely diced, *1 onion, finely diced, *1 red bell pepper, finely diced, *2 sprigs fresh thyme, leaves only, *Pinch turmeric, *8 cups low-sodium chicken broth, *2 cups long-grain rice, *Minced fresh parsley, for serving
1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
2. Drizzle the chicken breasts with olive oil and sprinkle with the ground thyme and some salt and pepper. Put the chicken in a roasting pan and roast until cooked through, about 20 minutes. Set aside.
3. In a pot over medium heat, melt the butter and saute the celery, carrots, onions and bell peppers for 3 to 4 minutes. Sprinkle with the fresh thyme and turmeric and cook for another 2 minutes. Pour in the chicken broth, cover, bring to a simmer and simmer 30 minutes.
4. Prepare the rice according to the package instructions; keep warm.
5. Shred or chop the chicken and add it to the pot with the soup. Simmer for another 15 minutes. Stir in the rice and minced parsley and serve.
These aren’t canned, these aren’t from a pre made box, but they are from the Food Network’s, Jeff Mauro! They are everything you want in a buttermilk biscuit: flaky, soft, and buttery! I let my biscuit soak up the broth. It was my own version of a dumpling:) My mom did a pretty fantastic job on these!
Grapevine Kentucky Buttermilk Biscuits
Ingredients *4 cups self-rising flour, plus more for dusting, *1 stick good butter, plus 3 tablespoons melted, *2 to 3 cups cold buttermilk, *1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Place heavy cast-iron skillet into oven to preheat. Chill a large mixing bowl, pastry cutter, flour and 1 stick butter in the freezer 15 minutes before assembling the biscuits.
2. Add the flour to the chilled mixing bowl. Working quickly, cut 1 stick butter into the flour using the chilled pastry cutter (or your fingers); the goal here is pea-size balls of butter. In batches, add in the buttermilk until the dough is cohesive yet still moist. Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and lightly press into a 1-inch-thick round. Using a biscuit cutter or business end of a dry-measuring cup, cut out 8 biscuits. (Use the extra dough to cook up a big piece of shortcake for dessert….strawberry shortcake!)
3. Carefully remove the skillet from the oven and add the oil. Place the dough rounds into the hot skillet, right up against each other, and brush with the 3 tablespoons melted butter. Bake until golden brown, about 15 minutes.
Now, my specialty, salad…
This was nothing special, just chopped romaine, roma tomatoes, avocados, and homemade balsamic dressing!
Homemade Balsamic Salad Dressing:
You can make the dressing in small amounts too. In this cup, I have 1/4 cup olive oil, 1/8 cup Balsamic Vinegar of Modena, 3 tablespoons honey, 1/2 tablespoon garlic powder, pink of sea salt, 1 teaspoon of italian seasonings
This meal didn’t make me feel crappy like most home cooked meals do after filling up. I filled up on healthy salad, a bowl of soup and a biscuit. I could have gone back for more biscuits, but I’m working on that will power!
The best part of this meal was the leftovers. The soup continues to get better and better everyday.
What is your favorite meal to have home cooked by your mom?