Thursday, September 29, 2011

Chicken Noodle Soup

Mmmmm What better then homemade chicken noodle soup? Talk about the ultimate comfort food.  Cooler temperatures are on their way here in NY, so what better time to whip up this easy soup.  Another great thing about this recipe is that it is cheap.  It takes a little while to make, about 3 hours I would say, so plan on doing it a bit early if you plan on it for dinner that night.  I also have to say I wanted to dedicate this to one of my old friend's mom.  At Luke's mom's house was the first time I had ever had a real homemade chicken soup and that memory will always hold a special place in my heart.  So enjoy and share this with the ones you love.

Cooks Note: You can use any chicken pieces you want in this, you can even use a full chicken not even butchered, but I do recommend chicken with skin and bones still intact for flavor.

Part 1:


· 4 whole chicken  leg quarters (bone and skin on) (about 4 pounds of chicken total)
· 2 carrots
· 2 celery ribs
· 1 large onion
· 3 bay leaves
· 1 tsp whole peppercorns
· a bundle of thyme (about 15 pieces)  (I didn’t have fresh so I used 1-2 tbs of dried)
· 1 lemon, sliced
· water and a big pot

  1. Just throw everything listed above into a pot and cover everything completely with water.
  2. Carrots and celery just put in whole, or cut so they fit in the pot- onions cut in half but leave the hairy root end intact.  We want to be able to fish this stuff out later easily.
  3.  Bring to a boil and reduce to a low simmer- just so you see little bubbles coming up.  We want to poach the chicken, not boil it.
  4. Cook this for at least an hour and a half.  Skim the fat and oil off the top of the water every now and then.

Part 2:

More stuff you'll need:

3 carrots, 3 ribs of celery, 1 bag of wide egg noodles (or any pasta/noodle you like)

  1. So you've been gently poaching the soup for at least an hour and a half.  Remove all the big pieces of veg and bay leaves/thyme bundle and discard.
  2. Remove the chicken and let cool down so you will be able to work with it.  After the chicken cools down remove the skin and discard.  Remove all the meat from the bones and shred with your fingers.  Reserve for later.
  3. Get another large pot or vessel- I put another empty pot in the sink with a regular colander/strainer over it and carefully poured the liquid into it to strain out any remaining bits.
  4. Now in the newly emptied pot that we cooked everything in- put back on the stove and add a little bit of oil to it.  Slice or chop your new carrots and celery and add to the hot oil.  Add salt. Cook until just softened then add back all the liquid and reserved chicken. Add more salt.
  5. Bring this to a boil and reduce to a simmer for about another hour (If you are in a rush, as soon as this is all hot you can just cook your noodles and serve).
  6. Before you serve, remember to salt according to taste
  7. Cook your egg noodles separate and then add noodles to the bowl first then top with the soup part.  Leave the noodles separate from the soup- so the noodles don't "over starch " and over cook in the soup.  Also if you have leftovers and need to freeze it or just store in the fridge you don't want to add the noodles until you serve again.
  8. I love to top it off with some fresh cracked pepper and some saltines. MMmmm.
Any leftovers? You can just freeze it and when you want to make it just pop it in a pot and reheat. Simple as that. I hope this makes you feel all warm and fuzzy inside!

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