Nigel Slater’s recipes always seem to come off as…effortless. As if the combination of ingredients he’s chosen and the manner in which he combined them is the most natural thing in the world. In this issue of The Guardian he discusses three different soups and I selected the Chicken, Butter Bean, and Tarragon recipe.
On cooling fall or winter nights, when the sun goes down before 5pm and its dark so quickly, a nice, thick soup seems only more than natural to prepare.
I start with a lot of onions, cooked in some EVOO, a tab of butter, and half a liter of chicken broth. This cooks gently for 15 minutes, which is followed with two chicken thighs (sans skins which are broiled and crisped to act as a garnish) and a can of butter beans which will simmer for about 40 minutes.
Crisp that chicken skin!
Once the meat is thoroughly cooked through, it is removed and the meat taken from the bones, to be dressed with tarragon, parsley, salt and pepper and put aside. Using an immersion blender, one then blends up the soup till about half is puréed smoothly, then all is divided into two soup bowls, the chicken placed artfully in the center of the bowl, and a piece of crispy chicken skin adorned on the top. Pretty simple…and sounds pretty good.
Aaaaand…it is. Stunningly tasty. While I feared at first that the dish would be pretty underseasoned, as only the chicken skins and the chicken were given any salt of pepper. To cover my bases, I added perhaps a teaspoon of salt to the onion/bean broth mix. It proved to be just enough.
And there is even enough for a leftover for my wife. Lucky girl.
PS: I’ve been running hot the last couple of weeks with the general success of my cooking. It’s…scary…and daunting, and I await the next Bombing In Manila event.