Sep 9

Desperation Dinners: Salad Soup (i.e., Creamy Spinach Soup)

in Fruits & Vegetables, Main Course, Recipes by Type, Soup & Stew

Just because it’s been months since I’ve written about a Desperation Dinner doesn’t mean I haven’t had the need for any!  I’ve had so much other stuff to post, that it seems that there hasn’t been time to squeeze a Desperation Dinner post in.  Well thanks to some other things getting moved around, I find myself with some extra room on the LFM calendar this week, so I thought I’d share a super simple recipe for the next time you find yourself in a Desperation Dinner situation.

Salad Soup, aka Creamy Spinach Soup

A couple of weeks ago I found myself looking at the clock at 5pm with nothing planned for dinner and two little girls starting to act whiny—a sure bet that they were getting hungry.  A quick perusal of my refrigerator and pantry saved the evening, producing a couple of bags of spinach, some pearl onions, a block of cream cheese, fresh garlic, chicken stock, and an assortment of dried herbs and spices.  While I brought the chicken stock to a simmer, I gave the spinach a quick chop (can I tell you how grateful I am for pre-washed and cut greens?), then dropped it into the stock, along with the pearl onions, garlic, and herbs.  After a quick cook, I added the cream cheese.  Eaten with some slices of hearty whole wheat pain de campagne, I had dinner on the table in 10 minutes.  Even better was the fact that my girls each inhaled multiple bowls of soup.  After finishing her first bowl Bug asked, “Mommy, can I have some more salad please?”  I was cracking up over that one long past when the last dish had been cleared from the dinner table!

Bug inhaling her Salad Soup

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Salad Soup, aka Creamy Spinach Soup

Makes about 6 to 8 servings

6 cups chicken stock
1 1/2 pounds spinach, roughly chopped
8 ounces peeled pearl onions
5 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons dried Italian herbs
1 tablespoon dried crushed basil
2 teaspoons dried crushed rosemary
2 teaspoons ground ginger
2 teaspoons ground cumin
2 teaspoons crushed chili flakes
2 teaspoons coarse sea salt
8 ounces cream cheese, cut into small pieces

1. Bring the chicken stock to a simmer in a large pot over medium-high heat. Add the chopped spinach, pearl onions, garlic, herbs, crushed chili flakes, and sea salt. Return to a simmer and cook for about 5 minutes.

2. Add the cream cheese, and stir until well combined. Return to a simmer and cook for another minute, then serve.

{ 13 comments… read them below or add one }

Olga @ MangoTomato September 9, 2011 at 1:27 pm

even w/o having 2 cute little girls, I still have plenty of desperation dinners. luckily, like yours, they are delicious.

my faves: tuna salad with a bunch of things thrown in, an omelet or shakshuka (eggs poached in tomato sauce).


Fuji Mama (Rachael) September 9, 2011 at 2:13 pm

@Olga @ MangoTomato, OOoh, it’s been ages since I’ve made tuna salad! Sounds like it’s time to make some! And shakshuka sounds DELICIOUS!! Going to have to try that!


Fuji Nana September 9, 2011 at 1:55 pm

Do you think I can make this with frozen spinach? I don’t have any fresh spinach in the fridge, but I do have a bag of frozen spinach and this is looking REALLY good right now.


Fuji Mama (Rachael) September 9, 2011 at 2:12 pm

@Fuji Nana, Yep, I’ve since made it again using frozen spinach and it works just as well!! Thaw the spinach first though, following the directions on the package!


Averie @ Love Veggies and Yoga September 9, 2011 at 2:46 pm

The title of this post is pretty much the story of my life :)

Busy working moms unite! :)


Barbara | Creative Culinary September 9, 2011 at 7:31 pm

Perfect timing maybe? Just finishing work, exhausted and a 9am appt. I need dinner and I’m desperate. This sounds so much better than my standard of Cheerios or if I’m really ambitious, a fried egg. Won’t you be my mommy?


chinmayie @ love food eat September 9, 2011 at 8:10 pm

I think soups are the ultimate desperate dinner ideas! When I run out of ideas I make pasta soup :)


AikoVenus September 10, 2011 at 9:52 am

I don’t eat chicken or cheese – but this seems like a great (and easy) recipe to make vegan! ^^ I absolutely love your photos and recipes.


Kalyn September 10, 2011 at 11:09 am

Sounds good to me! I wouldn’t even have to be desperate to eat this.


Fuji Mama (Rachael) September 19, 2011 at 12:25 pm

@Kalyn, Glad I’m in good company! :)


lynn @ the actor's diet September 10, 2011 at 12:35 pm

this looks DELICIOUS! i am always looking for ways to use up the copious amounts of spinach i buy.


LiztheChef September 10, 2011 at 12:38 pm

What a clever idea!


Katrina September 11, 2011 at 3:57 pm

This sounds freaking awesome! Yum!


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