Tuesday, March 31, 2009

chicken noodle soup

I promised this to my daughter Jenna a week ago - sorry! This recipe has evolved over the years, just by experimenting, but I must admit enriching the broth with the pureed vegetables came from my favorite Moosewood cookbook.

In a large stock pot, bring four quarts of water to a boil, with the following:

1-2 whole chicken breasts, depending on how large they are - with bones and skin you get a richer broth, but have a bit more work to do.

1 large carrot, cut into about 1-2" pieces
1 stalk of celery, cut into 1-2" pieces
1/2 medium sized onion, quartered
2 cloves of garlic
1 tbs. salt
cracked pepper to taste.

Bring all to a boil, then simmer for several hours - all day is good!

About a half hour before eating, remove the meat and drain the broth through a sieve. Put the broth back in the stockpot and puree the drained vegetables in a food processor, then add back to the broth. Bring to a boil.

Add about 8 ounces old-fashioned, medium-sized soup noodles and boil until softened. The homemade, Lancaster County variety of noodles are the best.

While the noodles are cooking, cut of the chicken into bite sized pieces. If you cooked chicken with bones and skin, this is where the extra work comes in, but it's worth it. Pull the chicken from the bones, and discard the skin and bones. By now, the noodles should be soft, and you can add the chicken back into the soup. Add a small bag of frozen corn and simmer until the corn is cooked. It's ready to eat, and especially good with homemade french bread.

The above version of soup is the kind my kids like best. For myself, I prefer adding a 6 oz. bag of Barilla Tortellini instead of noodles, and freshly sliced baby spinach at the end.

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