Chicken broth with pasta. It’s a gateway soup.

When I met Mike, he loved soup as much as I did. It was such a relief to me.  The 9 or 10 wonton soup containers full of chicken broth that I was storing in the freezer didn’t seem odd to him at all. In fact, he thought it was great! He even brought his trusty Williams-Sonoma soup book to me and gushed over the many recipes he wanted us to try out together.

Everything in our tiny kitchen was going perfectly. I made him my mom’s chicken soup, a simple bowl of chicken broth with Barilla farfalline. He loved it. I made soup with beans. Success. I made tortellini soup. Another home-run. I made Italian wedding soup with the little tiny meatballs. He was beyond impressed. I switched out chicken broth for beef broth. He was delighted.

We always had a hefty supply of wonton soup containers filling our freezer with the promise of yet another delicious soup at our fingers tips. Even when the fridge seemed barren, soup was the perfect answer to what’s for dinner…until it wasn’t.

I can eat soup every. single. day!  I can eat it in any kind of weather. I can have it for lunch and then again for dinner. Mike cannot. After suggesting my favorite, tortellini soup with my magical chicken broth one too many times, I ruined soup for Mike. I was careless. I should have known. This broth…it’s a gateway soup. I should have known we’d be helpless to its addiction. I’m experienced in the soup racket. I’ve been eating my mom’s chicken soup since I was a kid. Mike was new to the game. I really should have known better. I should have limited his intake in the beginning. Suddenly it had lost its luster. Instead of the usual high a bowl of broth would bring, he felt down. He couldn’t even look at tortellini! He became weary at the mere mention of soup. What had I done? Soup for dinner just wasn’t cutting it anyone.

I began limiting my soup suggestions, avoiding them as much as possible as if saving them for a rainy day. I struggled to refrain from the idea of soup. I would propose anything else for dinner until I couldn’t take it anymore. Sheepishly, I’d ask, “what about tortellini soup tonight?” immediately sensing his exasperation.

Why all the drama? This broth and the many soups and stews that it makes is so good that it places a huge responsibility on the cook. I warn you, don’t overdo it. You’ll want to. You’ll make it every week in endless variations. It will be such a treat. Your friends and family will love you for it…until they don’t.

With this simple chicken broth comes great power. Use it wisely. I recommend making a batch or two to stock your freezer, but limiting your use to two or three times per month. If you think you can handle it, increase your soup making to once per week, but don’t say I didn’t warn you if you find yourself relying on this magical elixir for every. other. dinner! It’s that good and if you and your guests aren’t ready for it, you’ll burn out.

I promise to try my best to space out the various soup creations you can make with this starter recipe so you’re not tempted to over use it like I did. As a precaution you should probably limit the amount of tortellini you keep on hand too. It was the tortellini soup that was my undoing. Chicken broth with a little pasta is one thing, but adding in tortellini is downright addictive. I can only spread the word so that you’ll learn from my mistakes. This chicken broth is your secret weapon in the kitchen. Just don’t use it against yourself.

We think you’re ready. Check out the recipe here. Start slowly and before you know it, you’ll be coming up with your own chicken broth variations and requesting more and more soup recipes from us. Just pace yourself. As for me, I’m an enabler. I’m off to check on Mike and see if he’s ready to get back on the soup!

If you missed our last post, How To Turn Your Doritos Habit Into Dinner, be sure to take a look here. Soup’s not the only food that’s addictive.