I'm trying to resist getting stressed out about moving next week. We're supposed to get the keys to our new place on the 28th and we have to be totally moved out by the 30th because a new couple will be moving into our little house on December 1st. Ack! We have to get all our stuff out, fix any little holes in the wall from hung artwork, clean the carpet and everything else all in a very small window of time. Thankfully we have lots of friends who will help out in exchange for beer and pizza (the universal wages for helping a friend move). I'm sure everything will go smoothly, and we've got a few days before we actually do any moving to pack everything up. Plus we've got a storage unit on wheels, aka the Winne, to put boxes in! I'm trying to get ahead on stuff and get some posts scheduled for next week when I'm sure I'll have zero time (and probably zero internet, yikes!).
2 (14 oz) cans diced tomatoes, with juice
1 cup finely diced celery
1 cup finely diced carrots
1 cup finely diced onions
1 tsp dried oregano or 1 T fresh oregano
1 T dried basil or 1/4 cup fresh basil
4 cups chicken broth
½ bay leaf
½ cup flour
1 cup Parmesan cheese
½ cup butter
2 cups half and half, warmed (or skim milk if you’re trying to cut some calories)
1 tsp salt
¼ tsp black pepper
1. Grab your slow cooker and throw in the tomatoes, celery, carrots, chicken broth, onions, oregano, basil, and bay leaf.
2. Cover and cook on the low setting for 5-7 hours, until flavors are blended and veggies are soft.
3. About 30 minutes before serving, prepare a roux: Melt butter over low heat in a skillet and add the flour. Stir constantly with a whisk for 5-7 minutes. Slowly stir in 1 cup of the hot soup from the slow cooker and then add another 3 cups and stir until smooth. Pour everything back into the slow cooker, stir, and add the Parmesan cheese, warmed half and half, salt and pepper. If you'd like, you can add more basil and oregano, since sometimes a slow cooker can dull the flavor of spices.
4. Cover and cook on low for another 30 minutes or so until ready to serve. Makes about 2 quarts (appx. 8 servings).
This soup is seriously so creamy and delicious. If you don't have a crock pot, don't worry! You can find instructions for how to make this soup over the stove here!