So my cucumbers are done and gone, my tomatoes are dwindling, and I had a buncha chopped carrots and celery. So I decided I would throw it in the slower cooker with a chicken leg, and make some soup. With rice, I thought. That would be different from noodles, and I haven’t had chicken and rice soup in forever.
So I snooped around Google to find slow cooker recipes for this. All the ones I found said to cook it 8 hours on low. Well…. I was starting at lunch time and only wanted to cook it for five hours. And I didn’t have fancy condensed soups or half and half to make creamy chicken and wild rice whatever, so… I improvised, picking directions from this and that recipe.
I threw in the carrots and celery, then the chicken, added some ‘soup mix’ frozen vegetables, and then 2 cups of rice. Spices, boullion, blah blah blah, then water to cover it all. Set it on 275 and let it go.
I was concerned that after five hours, the rice would have absorbed all the liquid and turned mushy-pasty. But oh well, it’s a learning experience, right? Instead, when I dredged up the rice from the bottom of the pot… it hadn’t absorbed ANY water and it was crunchy.
Seriously!? How does that work? (Or fail to work, as the case may be.)
I put the lid on the pot and put it in the fridge. I was going to try to leave it for another hour or so, but I figured that if it needed to be fixed, I could just dump it in a pot and actually boil it.
I had to go out, so I didn’t try that for dinner. The next night, I threw it in my big pot to boil. Because, no, the rice STILL hadn’t absorbed any water. As I shoveled it into the pot, I figured I had perhaps better change the name of the soup to “chicken and rice dumpling.” Because apparently, some of the rice absorbed the chicken fat, and turned into great sheets of glop.
Here’s another tip… when the recipe calls for boneless, skinless chicken breast, throwing a frozen chicken leg with fat and skin on it is probably not a real good idea… especially if you have no method or plan of scooping the chickenfat out… :X
Yet still, there were crunchy grains of rice. Boiling this sucker for ten minutes did indeed make the rice finally absorb the water. As I was stirring, I felt a lot of the rice “dumplings” coating the bottom of the pot.
Now, these are my new stainless steel NON-no-stick pots. No Teflon! I’m very happy to not have the Teflon any more, because you even look at those things with a metal spoon, or even the plastic scrub brush, you end up flaking that stuff off. But in this instance, it probably didn’t serve me too well…
Actually, come to think of it, perhaps I should have used a metal spoon or something to scrape the pot as I was stirring. I’m so trained not to… perhaps next time I will remember.
I scooped out some of the soup… perhaps I should consider calling it chowder now. It was still boiling hot, so I left the majority in the pot, and took my bowlfull off to eat it. After it cooled down. Nothing is worse than hot soup — not even lukewarm pizza. You sit there waiting and waiting for it to cool down, then you can’t wait any longer and burn the heck out of your mouth!
Anyway! It was very tasty! Oh, and I was extremely surprised to bite into a carrot and find it was NOT turned to mush. It wasn’t crunchy, per se, but it had some body. The celery too. Not what I expected.
Then later, as I was scooping s– er– chowder out of the pot, I got to the bottom coating and got it scraped up. And yes, it was burnt on the bottom.
So there you go, I have achieved one of the most difficult cooking results! Burnt Soup!