Mama Leone's Chicken Soup
(makes about 15 cups)
1/2 Pound Boneless Skinless Chicken Breast or Tenders
2 teaspoons kosher salt plus extra for chicken breasts (divided)
1/2 teaspoon black pepper plus extra for chicken breast (divided)
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
3 tablespoons butter
1 medium onion, diced
3 stalks celery, diced
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1/2 teaspoon dried tarragon
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
2 tablespoons paprika
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons all purpose flour
8 cups chicken broth (can use low sodium)
1-14.5oz can diced tomatoes in juice
3/4 cup whipping cream
2 cups thinly sliced fresh spinach
Sprinkle salt and pepper on both side of the chicken breast and lightly sauté. When cool enough to handle, dice the meat and set aside until needed.
Heat the oil in a large stockpot over medium heat. Add the butter and melt. Saute the onions and celery until the onions are translucent, about 6 to 7 minutes. Add the garlic, tarragon, oregano, paprika and remaining 2 tablespoons of salt and 1/2 teaspoon black pepper. Cook, stirring, for 3 or 4 minutes Add the flour and stir until well combined. Slowly whisk the chicken broth and bring to a boil. Add the tomatoes and cream. Reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes. Add the reserved chicken breast and simmer 10 minutes more. Just before serving, stir in the spinach.
As you see in the picture above, I didn't cut up the spinach....I had already served the soup to our guests and just wanted to get the spinach into the bowl.
I have served this to lots of different people and have yet to find anyone that doesn't think it is exceptionally good!
I discovered this soup at a deli downtown several years ago...before I was married even. I loved getting a cup of this for lunch with a roll. Then, by a stroke of good luck, I saw the recipe for this soup in the newspaper and I cut it out to be saved and cherished forever!