Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Chicken Soup with Melba Snack Crackers

You know me. You know I don't teach by the script in the book, and I don't make recipes precisely by the instructions - well, not often. When MomCentral sent me two boxes of Melba Snack Crackers to review, I looked up a few recipes and made one - in my own way.

It was a dark and stormy Saturday, the kind that encourages sleeping late and staying indoors. It was the perfect day for chicken soup in the crockpot. I used chicken stock from the freezer combined with water and stock mix from a nearby corner market, and then added two carrots, two stalks of celery, and a little onion from the freezer. A small frozen jar of chopped leeks fell into the soup, too. Okay, it wasn't an accident. I thought leeks would enhance the flavor of the soup.

The melba recipe had specific spices listed; 1 bay leaf, 1 teaspoon dried thyme, and 1/4 teaspoon turmeric. I added these and a little lemon pepper. When summer arrives, I'm sure I'll use fresh thyme. Mmmm.
The vegetables and stock simmered all day. Mid-afternoon I added diced chicken, chicken breasts I'd thawed and partially cooked over the dying coals from the grill the night before. The original recipe called for okra; with none in the pantry, I left it out. Southern friends, please try it and let me know if okra makes a difference in the flavor.
To serve, I followed the instructions (really, truly) and served the soup over Melba Crisp Crackers, the Spicy 3 Pepper flavor. Results: delicious. The Melba Crisps were a little like croutons; more flavorful than saltine crackers, a little more fun with the soup.

While I waited for the soup to simmer, I sampled the Sea Salt flavor with cheese and summer sausage. It was delicious. Chuck tried the Spicy 3 Pepper for snacking. True to form, I thought the flavor was just right, and he thought it was a bit bland but good.

In their mission to encourage healthy eating and exercise, the people at Old London Melba Toast are also sponsoring a dance contest. “Dance Your Way to Hollywood” will send one lucky winner and a guest to Tinseltown for a once-in-a-lifetime experience, including private dance lessons and tickets to watch the taping of a highly popular television show. The four-day, three-night, all-expenses-paid experience includes air travel and accommodations at a popular Hollywood hotel. Sweepstakes entries will be accepted March 17 through June 30, 2010.

I wrote this review while participating in a blog campaign by Mom Central on behalf of Old London Melba Toast and received a sample to facilitate my candid review. Mom Central sent me a gift card to thank me for taking the time to participate.

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