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Spicy Cream of Tomato Soup with Chicken and Pasta

One of the things that always comforts me on a cold, rainy day is a hearty soup. It was pouring out this past Sunday and chilly in the 40’s so soup was perfect for dinner and decided on this creamy tomato soup with chicken and pasta. I was inspired by the chicken tomato soup with orzo served at Hale & Hearty, a popular soups and salads chain in NYC area. I order that soup every time I go there! It’s so good but sometimes just don’t feel like dishing out $7 for an itty bitty cup of soup so made a whole pot of it, enough for 6 servings! I’ve had it twice already and still have lots more, which I froze, and all for hmm, let’s see, about the same price!

I of course didn’t have the recipe but thought I’d try to make something similar. I also made it spicy and it was perfect! I used rigatoni pasta because that’s what I had on hand but this soup would pretty much work with any pasta, just as long as you don’t use too much. Even lasagna would work if you break it up into pieces. The soup should be nice and thick, not too runny and the focus should be the tomatoes, so less pasta is better. I also had to make it a little spicy which the chain’s version is not but it’s exactly what I needed. The rain pounding on the windows outside, the chill indoors (because I refused to turn on the heat!!) and the hot, spicy soup was so nice and delicious.

I’ve also been fighting off allergies for a while now and soup just always does the trick in helping me feel better and clearing up the sinuses. Give this one a try and let me know what you think. I haven’t made too many soups this year because the weather has been so odd here. We had temperatures in the 70s in January, last week it reached 80 then plunged into the 40s…really freaky but you know, I adjust. Next time I’ll make pozole, which I’ve been putting off…that recipe is a bit daunting but I’ll do it, I’m determined! Next is a chicken tortilla soup for Cinco de Mayo so stay tuned!

Cream of Tomato Soup with Chicken and Pasta
serves 4-6

1-2 boneless chicken breasts
2 tbsp olive oil
1 small onion, diced
1 garlic clove, minced
16 oz can of crushed tomatoes
16 oz can of tomato sauce
2 cups of chicken broth
2 tbsp heavy cream
1 tsp of oregano
1 tbsp fresh basil, chopped
1 tbsp fresh parsley, chopped
1 tsp salt
1/4 cup of buffalo wing sauce, like Frank’s
2 tbsp of cayenne pepper sauce
1-2 cups of uncooked rigatoni pasta

1. Season a pot of water with salt, to taste, and bring to boil. Add the chicken until its completely cooked through.When chicken is done, shred it with a fork.

2. In a separate large pot heat up the oil on medium heat, add the onions and cook until translucent. Add the garlic and stir, then add the shredded chicken. Next add both cans of tomatoes, the chicken broth, and the cream and stir well. As mixture is coming to boil add the herbs, salt, hot sauces and pasta. Stir well and let soup cook for 10-15 minutes until the pasta is very tender.

3. Serve with crusty Italian bread and sprinkle with a bit of grated parmesan cheese if you like.

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