Friday, March 10, 2017

Homemade Chicken Noodle Soup

I love soup on a cold or rainy day! Over the past couple of winters, I've shared a good number of soup recipes. This past winter was pretty much non-existent for us. Example - mosquitoes on Christmas Day. Yep. That kind of (non)winter.

However, our forecast calls for two or three days next week with highs in the mid-50's! One last "hurrah"! before Spring officially arrives. Perfect soup weather!

We did pick up the flu on our trip to New Orleans in February, so I made this delicious and comforting soup one Sunday when we were all home sick. It really did make us all feel better!

Begin by submerging a whole chicken (about a five pounder) in chicken broth. I used two "boxes" (four quarts) and finished off with a little water to make sure it was completely covered. Put it on to boil and then begin on your veggies. 

I rough chopped two stalks of celery, two carrots and a medium onion.

Add a couple of peeled and smashed cloves of garlic, two bay leaves and three sprigs fresh thyme.

Drop all this in the pot with the chicken. Once it comes to a boil, reduce to simmer (uncovered) and let it go for about an hour and fifteen minutes to an hour and a half.

Carefully remove the chicken to cool.

I strained out the veggies and herbs.

Let the broth sit a few minutes while you prepare your soup veggies, and then you can skim off a little fat.

I reserved about a quart of the stock. I had the kids sip this straight up out of a coffee cup. They loved it and chicken broth is so good for colds and flu.

Meantime - I peeled and chopped two large carrots. I cut the carrots in half lengthwise and then chopped them into about 1/3 inch half-moons. Not too thin. You don't want them to turn to mush.

Next I cut my leek. Leeks have a very mild onion-y and almost liquorice flavor.

Cut off both ends.

Cut in half lengthwise.

Cut into 1/4" pieces. These will not fall apart like the carrots.

Drop in a bowl and fill with water.

Swish them around a few times and let them sit. The sand will sink to the bottom. Use a slotted spoon to dip them out, being careful not to stir up the sand in the bottom.

I finely chopped one medium onion and sauteed it in a little EVOO.

Meanwhile, remove skin from chicken. It should be cool enough by now to handle.

Once I had all the meat, I shredded some of the larger pieces. (My dogs LOVED the chicken carcass and veggies that were leftover from making the broth!)

When onions begin to become soft, throw in leek and carrots and a couple cloves of finely minced garlic. Saute for about two minutes.

Add chicken...

and broth...

And simmer covered for about 30 minutes to allow veggies to cook. The last 10 minutes or so, add your uncooked egg noodles. Cover and leave it to simmer another 10-12 minutes until noodles are done. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

I served it with crispy garlic bread!

This was so rich since the broth of the soup was made from canned broth and a whole chicken! Yum! The veggies retained their texture, and it was so well seasoned. The noodles gave it an almost silky texture.

Here's what was leftover after lunch! We enjoyed it all week!

TIP - Next time, I will cook my noodles separately according to package instructions and add them to each bowl as needed. After a day or so of sitting in the fridge, the flavor was AMAZING, but the noodles had absorbed much of the liquid, and instead of soup, it was more the consistency of chicken and dumplings. Which is not a bad thing! But the kids like a looser soup. Just an idea!

I hope you have the chance to make this soon. Canned soup just does not compare! 

I'm so glad you stopped by my neck of the woods!

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