Tag: Chicken Soup

Sickeningly Good Chicken Chowder

Huh…in case you’re wondering why it’s two for one day here at RFFMT, it’s because I only realised that I hadn’t posted this recipe for Chicken Chowder which I wrote weeks ago, when I went to post my Pieathalon recipe.  So here is my belated Chicken Chowder.


The A-Z of Cooking has not been kind to me recently.  So, even though I  LOVE soup and we are in the middle of winter so it’s perfect soup weather, I had my hesitations about trying something from the chapter called “Soups to Make a Meal”.  There were three options.  Lentil Soup, Minestrone and Chicken Chowder.  I feel like I  just made George Harrison’s Dark House Lentil Soup, the picture of the minestrone looked vile – and the recipe called for weird inclusions like turnips, parsnips  and swedes which have their place (which is mostly in the garbage) but never in a minestrone.  Not on my watch anyway.  So Chicken Chowder it was.  

At the time, i wasn’t overly concerned that there were no photos of the said chicken chowder.  You can’t photograph everything right?  Well, not in 1977 anyway.  As I was to find out, the omission quite possibly had more to do with a factor of the chicken chowder rather than any sort of 1970’s austerity measure.

Chicken Chowder 1

Before we get to the lows, let’s talk about life (and soup) highs.  I was immensely proud and somewhat baffled by being named one of Feedspot’s Top 100 food bloggers of 2017.  I’m still waiting for an email saying something along the lines of “Sorry Ms Fryer, there has been a terrible mistake and we have dealt with the offenders appropriately”  but in the meantime?  I’m doing a happy dance!

Awwwwww……he wasn’t even my President and I miss him to death!  How adorable is his happy dance?  And that cheeky little smile at the end?  Too.  Much. 

But I digress.  Chicken Chowder.  The highs.  This tasted deeeee – licious.  It was everything you want in a hearty winter soup.  Tasty, thick, creamy, filled with chicken and veg…..perfect comfort food to combat the cold weather blues!

Chicken Chowder 2So much for the highs.  What they don’t tell you in food blogging school…or maybe they do, I wouldn’t know, is that sometimes, things that taste really good – (Souper anyone?  Anyone?  Am I ladleing it on too thick?  Do I need to take stock?) sometimes just look a little bit shit when you try to photograph them.  Which is why I spent WAAAAAAAYYYYY   too many hours trying not to make my chicken chowder look like big bowls of vom.

Oh.  My.  Lord.  

The very things that made the chicken chowder delicious – creamy, chunky, diced veg….all combined to make the first….hmmm…let’s say 20 photos….. all look like someone had just thrown up rather neatly into a plate.  I really, really hope that the photos I ended up with don’t share that attribute.  But just in case you think I exaggerating, I will post one of the early versions right at the end.  Kind of makes me think that The A-Z of Cooking knew what it was doing when it conveniently didn’t have a photo of this hot mess!

Chicken Chowder 3

I used carrots, leeks and potatoes as my root vegetables.  Otherwise, here is the recipe direct from 1977!

Chicken Chowder Recipe

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  Ye of faint stomachs, look away now…here is one of vomitous photos.  

What a difference a bowl makes!

Chicken Chowder 4



The Dishiest Dish – Chicken Tortilla Soup

What a week it’s been!  It was so much fun cooking for the Vincent Price cookalong but there were also many other meals to make.  My meal plan also got thrown out of whack because there was more chicken leftover than I had assumed there would be so I had to quickly find something to use it all up.  Enter Tortilla Soup!

 Tortilla Soup3

I can’t believe I have not come across this before.  Adding chips to soup?  Brilliant! You are supposed to use tortilla chips but I had some Doritos in the house.  Given this was a dish made mostly from leftovers and pantry items I decided to use them instead of having to buy more stuff. I loved the idea of being able to add your own crunch and avocado and herbs.  It reminded me of eating pho when you get the big plate of herbs and chilli and lime alongside your soup to add per your desire.

The other highlight was the Gourmet Traveller Cucumber, Pistachio, Grape and Feta salad.  It was so flavourful and beautiful to look at.  The recipe called for green grapes but I used black grapes.  I added some rocket (arugula) as well. It went superbly with some roasted salmon. 

Cucumber, Pistachio, Feta & Grape SaladThe biggest disappointment of the week was the saffron and pistachio kulfi.  I am always so excited when the warm weather rolls around and I can bring out the ice-cream maker but something in this recipe did not work.  You had to mix milk powder, custard powder and cornflour into buttermilk and one (who knows, possibly all) didn’t really dissolve even though I heated it exactly as directed.  The texture was grainy and it was bland to boot.  I added some dried cranberries which helped but it was still not ideal. If anyone has a kulfi recipe that works, please send it my way!

This week I am looking forward to cooking:

Starter /Lunch / Salad  – Sweet Potato Wedges with Chimichurri and Speck from Bon Appetit

Main Event – Slow Roasted Chermoula Lamb

Sweet Treats – Passionfruit and Coconut Custard. 

In Other News I Am

Listening To

The Message Podcast was good.  I have listened to the first two episodes and am enjoying it a lot. 


I am by no means a perfectionist but I have found a new game to play whilst waiting for my Candy Crush lives to regenerate.   It is hitting all my OCD buttons!



I have finished Orphan #8 and am about to start The Reckoning.  This is the November book club selection.  Autobiography is not a genre I am overly fond of so I have mixed feelings about it.  We’ll see.  I am also not a fan of hard back books as most of my reading is done on the train and they can be heavy to carry.  Also I can hold up a paperback in one hand and read if I don’t get a seat but find it harder to do with a hardback. Because I’m weak. 

I found a two new blogs to follow.  In one of my first ventures into blogging I cooked food that was inspired by or mentioned in the books I was reading.  It was pretty dismal as I found that either no food was mentioned or it took me too long to read the books or the food was stuff I did not like.  Occasionally I think about bringing it back and go through phases where I start sticky noting food in the books I read.  Reading these both inspires me to get back into it.  And depresses me because these ladies do it so much better than I ever did!

Alison’s Wonderland Recipes

Little Library Cafe

Also, I have been reading this for a while now and I think she is one of the most hilarious people on the internet:

Bitches Gotta Eat


I have finished the Jon Ronson (loved it).  And have started on the audiobook for

The Faithful Couple


To celebrate a belated Halloween we watched You’re Next.  I had one scream out loud moment and it was pretty scary.  But we decided the overriding message was “Don’t mess with Australian girls”. Amen to that!

I am also about to start Season 3 of Orphan Black.


Someone (not me thank Goodness) dropped our olive oil pouring bottle which smashed on the tiles.  He then quickly McGuyvered up a temporary replacement from an old wine bottle.  I really like it.  So it may be staying permanently.

Oil BottleHere’s the Tortilla Soup Recipe. 

Tortilla Soup

Tortilla Soup


  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 red onion, chopped finely
  • 4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1 400g can of tomatoes
  • 1.5 litres of chicken or vegetable stock
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp sugar
  • 1 chilli finely sliced
  • 1 cup leftover chicken, diced
  • 1 400g can of five bean mix
  • 1 310g can of corn
  • 1 avocado, diced
  • handful of coriander (cilantro) leaves
  • handful of tortilla or corn chips
  • Sliced chili / red onion (optional)
  • Lime wedges


  • Heat the olive oil in a pan. Add the onion and cook until soft, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cumin and cook until the garlic is soft, about two minutes.
  • Add the tomatoes, stock, salt and sugar, and chilli and bring to the boil.'
  • Add the chicken, beans and corn and allow to heat through, about 10 minutes.
  • Spoon the soup into bowls.
  • Have bowls of corn chips, chopped avocado, chopped coriander, chilli, red onion and lime wedges on the table so eaters can help themselves to what they want.

What’s cooking in your kitchen?    What was the best thing you made this week? What’s your favorite thing to do with leftovers?

What are you looking forward to making next week? 

What are you reading, watching, listening to?

Please share!

Have a fabulous week everyone! 

Happy Cooking!

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Feel Good Libyan Chicken Soup

So, this is the day I had.

Libyan Chicken Soup
Libyan Chicken Soup

The morning was humid and windy. Otherwise known as hell for allergies. My train was cancelled so I had to stand on the platform for 20 minutes waiting for the next one. In the humidity and wind. By the time the train finally came we were crammed in like sardines, my hair was frizzy from the humidity and my nose and eyes were streaming from the wind and the pollen / dust / mad air of Melbourne. Plus I’d left my book at home and someone had turned my charger off overnight so when I turned my phone on for entertainment it lasted about ten seconds before shutting down.  No reading.  No candy crush.  Did I mention this was a Monday?

Libyan Chicken Soup3
Libyan Chicken Soup3

So I was jammed into the train, nose streaming.  And I had no tissues.  I always have tissues.  Except when I don’t.  I became one of those really annoying people who sniffle and snuffle on public transport.  I hate those people. I think the only reason someone didn’t yell at me to “Stop that goddamn sniffing” was because my eyes were also streaming like mad and people probably thought I was crying.

Which I did later in the day when I dropped my lunch box and my delicious salad fell all over the ground.  So, out to buy lunch and it was no longer hot and humid.  It was pouring with rain.  So I got  soaked to the skin because, of course, I had no coat and no umbrella.  I spent the afternoon shivering.  By the time I got home, I was cold and grumpy and yes, still sniffing and all I wanted to do was get my dinner on, do my yoga podcast and collapse in front of My Kitchen Rules.

Libyan Chicken Soup4
Libyan Chicken Soup4

 Harrrummmppphhhh…my soup calls for tomato paste. We always have tomato paste. Except when we don’t.  I felt like crying again but subbed in some hefty swearing and a can of tomatoes and a couple of sun-dried tomatoes.  And then I put my soup on and went upstairs to do my yoga pod. 

 It was now 7:02pm.  MKR starts at 7:30. Which is fine. I do the YogaMazing podcast routines which are all about 20 minutes. So perfect timing really.  Is it possible that one thing is going to work out for me today?  I switch on the computer.

7:02        Windows is updating your computer.

7:10        Windows is still updating your computer

7:20        Windows is unfuckingbelievably still updating your computer.

The update finally finished at 7:28. I swear, it was as if they had timed it for maximum annoyance.

By now my little bit of grumpiness had turned into a full scale funk and a full blown cold.  I stomped downstairs to turn on the telly and the twitter because that is now my default mechanism for watching My Kitchen Rules. Bravo MKR tweeters, you are the funniest and the best!!!

Not that I was thinking that then because I was in a pique with the world.

And then I got to the bottom step and thought “What is that gorgeous smell?”

And no, it was not the neighbour’s cooking something delish but MY chicken soup. My Libyan Chicken Soup with Thyme, or to be exact my Sharba Libiya bil Dajaj wa Alzatar.  Or as I like to call it, the chicken soup of awesomeness.   

This smelled wonderful. Exotic and fragrant with spices, it was instantly warming and uplifting.  And it tasted amazing.  Both soothing to my frayed nerves and bad temper and exciting and spicy to my tastebuds. 

Libyan Chicken Soup2
Libyan Chicken Soup2

Talk about chicken soup for the soul.  This was life affirming.  One bowl of this and my fit of pique was lifted. 

This was as easy as hell to cook.   And all of the ingredients should be readily available.   The recipe called for “orzo” which I also didn’t have so as well as the tomatoes I subbed in risoni.  I have since found out these are the same thing. Who knew? Personally, I am going to start calling it by it’s Libyan name of Bird Tongues which manages to be both incredibly poetic, a perfect description and also, a teeny bit creepy. Oh, and the thyme featured below?  Straight from my garden!!!

 Birds Tongues and herbs

I found this recipe via a group I joined called MENA, the Middle East and North African cooking club. Every month the host chooses a soup, a main and a dessert from a country in the region and members can cook any or all of them.   I have been loving cooking from Persiana, and was very keen to learn more about this region’s food and ingredients. And if this was anything to go by, bring it on.

The recipe except for the tweaks mentioned above is here:

Sharba Libiya bil Dajaj wa Alzatar (Libyan Chicken Soup With Thyme)

Gah…because I was sick I missed the cut off for MENA this month but never fear, hear are some of the other entries in for this month:

Have a fabulous week, and the next time you feel a little bit sniffly or at odds with the world, try this soup!!!

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