Chicken Gnocchi Soup

If you enjoy the Chicken Gnocchi soup at Olive Garden restaurant, you will love this soup.

1 pound boneless chicken breast, cooked and cubed
3 tablespoons of unsalted butter
5 tablespoons of flour
2 tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil
3 cans of chicken broth (14 ounces each)
1 quart of heavy cream (or half and half)
3 cups of milk
2 pounds (or packages) of gnocchi (found in pasta or gourmet section)
1 cup celery, diced
2 cups of frozen carrot coins (or diced carrots)
1 large onion, diced
1-2 garlic cloves, minced
1 cup of fresh spinach, chopped
1 tablespoon of fresh flat-leaf parsley, chopped
1 teaspoon of thyme
Salt and pepper

Cook the boneless chicken breast and set aside. Cook the gnocchi (potato pasta) according to the directions on the package and set aside. In a large pot you normally use for soup, saute the onion, celery, and garlic in a pan with butter and olive oil. When the veggies are tender, turn the heat to medium-low and add the flour to make a roux. Cook for about one minute. To this mixture, add the quart of cream (or half and half), milk, and cans of chicken broth. Cook for a few minutes until the mixture thickens and then add the cooked gnocchi, cooked chicken, spinach, herbs, and frozen carrots. Simmer on low heat for at least 30 minutes.
Serve with your favorite Italian bread or breadsticks and a garden salad.