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Warm and satisfying on a cold winter's night. Serve with a loaf of warm and crusty bread. Use any smooth-melting cheese you like, such as parmesan, white cheddar, monterey jack - use your imagination! But you've got to like asparagus, because that is definitely the star of this show!
- 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme leaves
- 1⁄2 teaspoon salt
- 1⁄4 teaspoon cracked black pepper
- 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 1 bunch fresh asparagus
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 4 tablespoons butter
- 1⁄3 cup all-purpose flour
- 8 cups chicken stock
- 1⁄2 cup half-and-half or 1⁄2 cup cream
- 8 ounces shredded cheese
- 1 cup instant potato flakes
- salt and pepper
- Cut chicken into 1/2 inch cubes.
- In a zip top bag, combine dried thyme, salt and pepper, and toss with chicken. Set aside.
- Rinse asparagus, and remove tough stems. Cut into 1/2 inch pieces.
- In a large soup pot over medium high heat, add the olive oil. Add chicken and cook until lightly browned on all sides.
- Add the asparagus and garlic and saute until slightly soft.
- Push chicken and asparagus to the edge of the pot. Add butter and allow to melt. Stir in flour with a whisk. Whisk for 1 minute.
- Pour in chicken stock, and stir well to combine. Bring to a boil.
- Add half and half or cream, stir to combine.
- Using an immersion blender, blend until mixture thickens slightly and turns a bit green.
- Add shredded cheese, stir until it melts.
- If the soup is too thin, add the potato flakes and allow to thicken. If you prefer, you could add wild rice instead.
- If you like it the way it is, add salt and pepper to taste, and serve with warm, crusty bread.