Even though the holidays are officially in full swing, you still can find time to eat delicious, healthy meals at home! All of the meals this week taste great the first day but even better the second! If an early winter cold has you down, my Asian chicken-noodle soup is just the right prescription—it's loaded with greens and spices to ward off any sniffles.

Grocery list3 lbs. boneless, skinless chicken6 cloves garlic1 large knob fresh gingerSesame oilOlive oil1 large fennel bulb64 oz. vegetable stock1 can (28 oz.) whole tomatoes in juice1 package fresh tortellini pasta (either cheese or spinach)2 cups either pinto, kidney, or heirloom beans, either canned or cooked from scratch1 large bag fresh spinachParmesan cheese1 yellow onionPaprikaCayenne pepper1 container sour creamFlour1 stick butter1 pint milkBaking powder4 quarts chicken broth1 jalapeño3 green onionsSoy sauceRice vinegar2 bunches baby bok choy1 package Chinese noodlesSriracha sauceFresh cilantro 

 

Asian Chicken-Noodle SoupA spicy, delicious version of everyone's favorite get-well soup

Serves 6

1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into chunks2 cloves garlic, minced1 tbsp. minced fresh ginger1 tbsp. sesame oil1/4 tsp. salt6 cups chicken broth1 jalapeño, thinly sliced3 green onions, sliced2 tbsp. soy sauce1 tbsp. rice vinegar2 bunches baby bok choy, chopped5 oz. Chinese noodles (about half a package)Sriracha sauce for serving (optional)Chopped cilantro for serving (optional)

1. Heat sesame oil over medium-high heat in a large heavy-bottomed stock pot. Add minced garlic and ginger and briefly sauté for about 30 seconds. Add chicken and bok choy, sprinkle with salt, and sauté for another 3 minutes until chicken has turned white but is not completely cooked all the way through.

2. Add chicken broth, jalapeño, and green onions to pot and bring to a simmer. Cook for 15 minutes until chicken is done.

3. Meanwhile, cook noodles in boiling salted water, drain, and rinse with cold water. Set aside.

4. Add rice vinegar and soy sauce, and stir. Add noodles to pot and serve with chopped cilantro and sriracha sauce on the side.

 

 

Chicken Paprika With Homemade DumplingsCreamy, delicious Midwestern comfort food

Serves 4

1.5 lbs. boneless, skinless chicken breast, cut into bite-size pieces2 tbsp. olive oil2 garlic cloves, minced1 yellow onion, diced32 oz. chicken broth1 tbsp. paprika1 tsp. sea salt1/2 tsp. pepper1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper3/4 cup sour cream1 tbsp. flour

For dumplings:1 cup flour1/2 tbsp. butter1/3 cup milk1/4 tsp. salt1/4 tsp. baking powder

1. Heat olive oil over medium heat. Add onions and briefly sauté until tender. Add garlic, chicken, paprika, salt, and pepper, and sauté until chicken has browned (about 6 to 8 minutes).

2. Once chicken has browned, add 1 cup chicken broth to pot and increase heat to high. Bring mixture to a simmer and continue cooking for another 5 minutes or so until chicken is done. Remove chicken with a slotted spoon and set aside.

3. Reduce heat to low and add sour cream and flour to simmering broth. Whisk well so there are no clumps; continue whisking and simmering until mixture is very thick. Add chicken back to pot and stir well.

4. Now, make the dumplings. Pour the remaining broth (3 cups) into another pot and bring to a boil.

5. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt. Cut in butter with your fingertips, working mixture together until all butter has been incorporated. Add milk and stir so a dough forms.

6. Turn dough out onto a floured surface and roll out to 1/8 inch thick. Using a knife or pizza cutter, cut thin strips of dough; cut across the strips to form small dough squares. Drop dough squares into boiling chicken broth and cook for about 5 minutes, until the dumplings float. Drain (reserve the broth for another use if you like) and drop cooked dumplings into chicken paprika. Stir and serve.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tortellini and Heirloom Bean SoupThis soup is light and brothy, but the tortellini and greens make it filling as well!

Serves 6 to 8

2 cloves garlic, minced1 tbsp. olive oil1 large fennel bulb, diced64 oz. vegetable or chicken stock1 can (28 oz.) whole tomatoes in juice1 tsp. salt1/4 tsp. pepper1 package fresh tortellini pasta (either cheese or spinach)2 cups either pinto, kidney, or heirloom beans, either canned or cooked from scratch3 cups fresh spinach or chopped Swiss chardParmesan cheese for serving

1. Heat olive oil over medium heat in a heavy pot. Add garlic and chopped fennel, and sauté for 3 to 5 minutes, until the fennel just begins to soften.

2. Quickly pulse the tomatoes in a blender or food processor to just barely purée (you still want some chunks). Add the chunky puréed tomatoes to the pot along with the stock, salt, and pepper.

3. Bring soup to a boil before adding tortellini and beans. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook for about 7 minutes, until tortellini are puffy and cooked through. Add Swiss chard or spinach to pot and stir so the greens wilt.

4. Serve soup with lots of freshly grated Parmesan cheese and additional salt, pepper, or red pepper flakes to taste.