There is a soup from the Provence, in the south of France, that is made by boiling garlic in chicken stock, and then serving the mashed garlic on a toast floating in the soup. It’s a traditional winter soup that I loved as a kid. I’ve adapted this to the North American chicken soup we all love, and thrown it all in the slow cooked for simplicity. I’m happy to report my kids love it too!
1 whole chicken, breasts removed (I save them for another dish- they just don’t add much in the slow cooker)
2 small turnips, peeled and cut into large chunks
2 large carrots, peeled and cut into 2″ cubes
1 large potato, peeled and cut into large chunks
1 small onion, peeled
1/2 head of garlic, cloves removed but not peeled
2 sprigs of fresh thyme, or 1 tsp ground
1 tsp black peppercorns
1 tsp coriander seeds
1/2 tsp dill
2 whole cloves
(you can add 2 pieces of celery if you like- I actually don’t like the taste of celery!)
8 slices of toasted baguette, or artisanal crackers
1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
Place the chicken into a slow cooker. Add turnips, carrots, potatoes, onion, garlic, herbs and spices and 6 cups of cold water. Cook 6 hours on high. Let cool.
Take out the peppercorns, coriander and cloves from the soup. Remove the chicken, and pull the meat off of the carcass, the return the meat to the soup. Mash the garlic cloves, (you can just slip them out of the their skins and squash them with a spoon) and return to soup. Season with salt.
To serve, heat soup, and ladle into bowls. with meat and vegetables. Top each bowl with one slice of baguette, toasted with 2 tsp of parmesan cheese over top, or crackers, and cheese sprinkled on top.
Note: I add a squeeze of Sriracha to the soup too! But I like strong flavors!