Monday, September 12, 2011

Chicken Noodle Soup

With the mild flu symptoms I've been experiencing lately chicken noodle soup just seemed like the perfect remedy.

At the grocery store this week I picked up two whole chickens. I removed the 4 breast segments for General Tso's Chicken dish recipe. The remaining carcasses (minus 2 legs) made a lovely concentrated stock.

Making stock is very easy, it is one of those things I love to make from time to time and also it's the reason I prefer to buy the whole chicken (none of it goes to waste and it's cheaper!)

The bones are the secret, even if all the meats are removed it still makes a good stock, and even if the carcass is a leftover from a roasted chicken it makes a lovely variation of stock!

Stock can be frozen or refridgerated and always comes in handy. In our household while growing up we never purchase meat stocks mostly because they weren't available but homemade always tastes best (and you know what goes into it for health purposes)

To make stock you just need these things:

A big pot
Chickens or Chicken carcasses
Garlic bulbs (however many you like) Leave the peel on and all
Onion (just remove one shiny outer peel in case it's dirty)
Celery sticks (just roughly chop up)
Carrots (yields a sweeter soup - totally optional)

Pepper corns
Bay leaf

Those are the basics

For a variation on flavour additionally add fennel seeds, celery seeds, turmeric (will make a yellow stock)

Add cold water to the chicken and set on medium low heat - never boil as it will cause a cloudy soup (something about the bones releasing something.. ) but its a bit of trouble clarrifying if that does happen.

Now just leave it alone. 3-6 hours or more. Checking from to time if there is enough water and adding more if the levels go down.

When it's done strain out all the bones and limp veggies and that's it!

If you have meat on those bones you want to remove them about an hour into the cooking when they're tender and flavourful, any longer and they lose flavour so just pick off the pieces with a pair of tongs and set aside for later, then let the stock finish cooking.

I like to refrigerate it and remove the layer of fat off the top then it's ready to use so making it a day in advance is good.

Chicken noodle soup

- 3-4 cups of homemade stock
- 1-2 cups chicken meat (set aside from stock making)

-Water to thin out the stock
-Salt (for seasoning)
-Worstershire sauce (about 1 tbsp)

Add to that:

Finely (bit size) and evenly chopped carrots, celery, green pepper (just a bit and it's optional - mum always put some green pepper in our soup)

4 cloves of garlic (whole)
1 onion (whole which can be removed later along with the garlic)

Let this come to a boil and simmer for 20-35 mins or until veggies are tender.


I used half of the noodle dough for the soup and it should serve about 6
(If you don't want leftovers halve the recipe so 1 1/2 cups flour and 3 eggs) or set the dough aside in the fridge and make something else with it another day in the week (Ravioli?)

3 cups flour
6 whole eggs

(or if you only have yolks which are leftover from other recipes like I do that's fine too, I've done a egg noodle using 3 cups flour and 6 yolks and 2 whole eggs and a few tbsp of water - usually 1 for every egg white missing)

Make a well with the flour, add the eggs and slowly incorporate it into a dough using your hands, once it's smooth and yellow divide and wrap in plastic. Let it sit for 30 mins to rest.

When you're ready to make the pasta roll it out (dusting board or counter with some flour) and using a rolling pin roll it very thin. If you have a pasta machine this is a good time to use it!

I like to be able to see the counter through the pasta so it should be thin and evenly rolled out.
Use a knife or pastry knife/cutter to slice thin strips and then cut it horizontally to create shorter noodles of 2 inch strips.

At this point you could use a slotted spoon and strain out your veggies into a big bowl.

In the pot with the stock add the noodles as you cut, work quickly and keep adding them in and let them cook briefly.

Add your veggies back in and pieces of chicken meat set aside.

Serve hot! Enjoy!


Joanne said...

This is an awesome chicken soup recipe. Of course, there are thousands out there, but I love how you go completely from stock to noodles. I will definitely be making it this fall!

Kariman Al Essawy said...

yummyyyy I can't wait to try it, looks so delicious