A Year of Comfy, Cozy Soups, Stews, and Chilis: Cooking for Halflings & Monsters, Volume 2

A Year of Comfy, Cozy Soups, Stews, and Chilis: Cooking for Halflings & Monsters, Volume 2

by Astrid Tuttle Winegar


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My daughter Callista was telling me about this soup she had whipped up on a whim. I told her it sounded amazing, but she hadn't written any of it down; she sort of remembered what she did, so I had to coax some memories out of her. This might not be exactly what she created, but she gave it a thumbs up!

I've never frozen this soup, so I can't tell you how avocados will freeze. It never lasts that long; it's such a comforting soup, sort of a New Mexican version of a chicken noodle soup. You'll feel your sinuses opening up when you eat this, and you'll be glad.

Callista's Amazing Avocado Chicken Soup

  • 2 tablespoons salted butter
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 cup onion, coarsely chopped
  • 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 3/4" chunks
  • 1 quart low-sodium chicken broth
  • 2 cups water
  • 4 ounces roasted and chopped green chile, with juice
  • 10-ounce can diced tomatoes with green chiles, with juice (such as Ro*Tel)
  • 1/2 cup long grain rice
  • 5-6 ounces fresh baby spinach, coarsely chopped
  • 1 pound avocados; peel, pit, and cut into 1/2" chunks (ripe, but not mushy)

Coat a 6-quart saucepan with cooking spray. Melt the butter over rather high heat. Saute the garlic, salt, pepper, paprika, cumin, onion, and chicken until the pink is gone, 5-7 minutes. Add the broth, water, chile, and diced tomatoes with green chiles and bring to a boil. Add the rice and bring to a boil again, then cook on a rolling medium simmer 20 minutes, uncovered. Stir a few times. Add the spinach and cook another 1-2 minutes. Stir the avocados in gently and cook just a for a few seconds. Season, if desired. Cover and chill leftovers. Serves 4-6.

Vegetarian? Omit the chicken and substitute one pound of chopped summer squash varieties, such as yellow or zucchini, and substitute vegetable broth for the chicken broth.


“Beef” highlights 11 hearty soups, stews, and chilis. Items such as “Dragon Fire Chili” and “Oodle Noodle Soup” will surely please the meat lovers in your family circle.

“Chicken” features 14 delectable items, oh so chickeny, to quote Julia Child (My Life in France). From the southwestern “Rev It Up Posole” to the exotic “Nothing Wrong with Mulligatawny,” your soul will definitely be comforted by these savory soups.

“Pork and Seafood” includes 13 succulent classics and original concepts exemplifying the best from land and sea, such as “Esther’s Manhattan Clam Chowder” and “Jumbo Gumbo.”

“Vegetables” comprises 14 delicious recipes that will make it easy to forget about adding meat to everything you eat. “Saffron Madness Soup” and “My Darling Minestrone” will satisfy even the most die-hard carnivore.

“Breads” contains 13 carbs to keep your soups, stews, and chilis company. And who doesn’t love carbohydrate company? “Naughty Naans,” “Epic Iron Skillet Cornbread,” and “Lovely Artisan Loaf” will make you question your decision to avoid carbs.

Also included are recipes for homemade stocks and other miscellaneous items, as well as sections for Shopping Sources and Conversion Charts. Over 70 tested recipes; beginner to intermediate; color photography and B/W graphics throughout; fully indexed.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780999417911
Publisher: Astrid Tuttle Winegar
Publication date: 10/31/2019
Series: Volume , #2
Pages: 258
Product dimensions: 7.99(w) x 10.00(h) x 0.70(d)

About the Author

Astrid Tuttle Winegar is the author of Cooking for Halflings & Monsters: 111 Comfy, Cozy Recipes for Fantasy-Loving Souls, which was a finalist in the 2018 New Mexico/Arizona Book Awards. Astrid has been cooking, baking, and reading fantasy (and plenty of other literature!) for over 40 years. She has a bachelor's degree in English and Latin and a master's degree in Comparative Literature and Cultural Studies from the University of New Mexico. She has loved C. S. Lewis since childhood and J. R. R. Tolkien since middle and high school. She also loves all Star things, both Trek and Wars, all things Whedon, and many other things besides... She lives in the enchanted city of Albuquerque, New Mexico, with her husband; she is also a mother and a grandmother. Her most recent book is A Year of Comfy, Cozy Soups, Stews, and Chilis: Cooking for Halflings & Monsters, Volume 2, which was a finalist in the 2020 New Mexico Press Women's Communications Contest and the 2020 New Mexico/Arizona Book Awards. For more information, go to astridwinegar.com.

Table of Contents


Is Soup the Perfect Food?

Soup Semantics

Breads, Carbs, and Pot Pie Conversion Tactics

Garnishes & Photography

Nice New Mexican & Mexican Garnishes

Charming Chili Garnishes


Quickie Versions, Substitutions, and Ingredient Quantities

Vegetarian & Meat-Lovers

Green Chiles & Other Hot Stuff

Seasoning, Salt, and Butter


Miscellaneous Idiosyncrasies

Sort of a Philosophical Mission Statement

Hey… Where’s the Fantasy?

Some Essentials for Soups, Stews, and Chilis

Mirepoix (or that which is known by dozens of other names…)

Crème Fraîche & Other Creamy Options

Cooked Hominy

Stocks and/or Broths

Chapter One—Beef

Chapter Two—Chicken

Chapter Three—Pork & Seafood

Chapter Four—Vegetables

Chapter Five—Breads


List of Kitchen Utensils

Cooking Utensils & Miscellaneous Items

Small & Large Appliances

Pots & Pans

Baking Essentials

Conversion Charts

Dry Ingredients by Weight

Liquid Ingredients by Volume

Lengths & Widths



The Fellowship of the Recipe Testers

Works Cited & Sourced

Miscellaneous New Mexico Items

Shopping Sources


Author’s Biography

Customer Reviews