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Chicken Vegetable Soup (M, TNT)
Source: L.A. Times
Serves: 4

2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into chunks
1 tablespoon. olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
3 whole cloves
1 cup thinly sliced carrots
1 cup thinly sliced celery (I didn't use)
1 onion, thinly sliced
2 14-1/2 ounce cans chicken broth (can use vegetable broth too)
1 14-1/2 ounce can diced tomatoes, with liquid
1 15 oz. can white beans, with liquid
1/4 cup red or white wine (I used vermouth, from my refrigerator.)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
2 tablespoons fresh thyme (I used dried, about 1 tablespoon)
1-2 cups loosely packed spinach leaves, coarsely chopped (I used what I had: broccoli, and 2 tomatillos...)

Toss together chicken chunks, oil, garlic, and cloves in a 2-1/2-quart casserole dish or other microwave-safe bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and microwave on high until chicken is no longer pink, about 5 minutes. Remove chicken to separate bowl and discard cloves.

Add carrots, celery, onion, (and any other vegetable you are using, except spinach, which you would add later; see below) and broth to casserole and cover again. Cook on high until vegetables are tender, about 10 minutes. Add tomatoes, beans, wine,  salt and pepper, and thyme.

Cover and cook until mixture bubbles, 10 minutes. Stir. Add reserved chicken and cook on high until hot, a few minutes. Add spinach and cover until it wilts, 3 minutes.

Poster's Notes:
This was in the L.A. Times this week, and we liked it a lot. Those of you who enjoyed making and eating the incredibly fast Peanut Butter Chicken (click here for recipe), will also appreciate this method. You can add whatever amounts and types of vegetables you have in your larder, and they keep their bright colors and texture which can be lost when cooked slowly.

Posted by Jane Kramer

Nutritional Info Per Serving: 344 calories; 7g fat