Chicken soup simply had to be made this week - not only did I have a chicken carcass, but I also have a cold. I do not have a picture to share - for several reasons, but the main one being that the soup was not that pretty, quite dark actually. I used Nigel Slater's Roast chicken broth recipe from Real Cooking as a template.
I sauteed onion, carrots, and leeks in olive oil, then added the chicken carcass and browned it. Brandy and red wine are added at this point and allowed to cook until almost evaporated - this made the soup dark brown. I then threw in 4 cups of water, bay leaves, peppercorns, and some fresh thyme and cooked gently for an hour. The house smelled fantastic - as though I were cooking Thanksgiving dinner. After I strained it, I brought it to the boil and added a bit of sherry (Nigel's suggestion - this is a very boozy chicken soup), leftover chicken, some orzo and peas for color. It was delicious. Nigel suggests using ginger and mushrooms during the initial vegetable saute, which sounded wonderful, but I didn't have either.
I haven't finished any books because I keep starting new ones. Here is what I've got going right now:
North and South by Elizabeth Gaskell- It's been a few weeks since I picked this up, but I definitely plan on going back to it.
This Time of Dying by Reina James- I noticed this in the Portobello Books catalog and found a copy at the library. I am enjoying it so far.
The Almost Moon by Alice Sebold- I was a fan of The Lovely Bones (despite that strange out-of-body-experience portion towards the end) and hoped that despite the negative press I've heard about this one, it might be a winner. I'm about 80 pages into it since I picked it up at the library yesterday and I can say it's dark. It's very dark.
The Air We Breathe by Andrea Barrett- This is the first book I've won from the Library Thing early reviewers program - I am thrilled! I only put my name in for a couple of books that I was really interested in and knew I would want to read right away. It feels very official! It came with a letter from the publisher addressed to me, not just 'Dear reader'.
I have my bookclub meeting tonight when we will discuss Water for Elephants. I cannot wait to see what everyone thought of it. I think we will also start emailing lists of each member's suggestions for next year, which I always look forward to.