The Lovin’ Soupful

Dad could do anything. At least, that’s the way I remember him. He made projects like rearranging interior walls and made constructing backyard playgrounds look like child’s play. There was one task that he was least inclined to take on: cooking. He had few exceptions to this rule. Fortunately, Homemade Chicken Noodle Soup made his “can do” list. 

Dad started by making a stock from leftover chicken and a mirepoix to create the base for a delicious soup. The best part was his homemade noodles. Nothing beats homemade when it comes to soup. Try your hand at making this soup, you’ll like it.

Step 1: I’ve learned a secret from a younger relative, Danielle, that makes the task easy for anyone. Fill a crock pot or similar device with leftover roast chicken bones, vegetable scraps, and some herbs. (I freeze scraps from cooking prep until I have enough to create this flavorful bone broth.) Add enough water to cover the contents, switch it on slow cook, and walk away for several hours. Voila’. When you return, a flavorful broth will be waiting for you to use.

Step 2: Use a large pot to sweat one large, diced onion. When the onion becomes soft and transparent, add one cup each of diced carrots and celery. Season with salt and pepper. Add about one cup of diced cooked chicken and your strained broth. Toss in a handful of chopped parsley and/or thyme, rosemary, and basil. This entire step takes about 10 minutes.

Step 3: If you’re not so energetic, or just came home from work, use dry or frozen egg noodles from the grocery store. But if you are feeling inspired, make fresh egg noodles. To make noodles, measure one cup of flour into a bowl, add a pinch of salt, two egg yolks, and three tablespoons of water. Mix it up until a dough forms. Roll it out on a floured surface and cut into thin strips. Drop into boiling, salted water and cook until noodles float to the surface. (An alternative method to rolling the dough is to pinch small pieces of dough between your fingers and drop it into boiling, salted water.) Use a slotted spoon to transfer noodles to the soup pot. Adjust seasonings to taste.

That gives you a tasty dinner for a cold day in about fifteen minutes, not counting the time the stock was cooking while you were out doing whatever it is you do during the day. And, if you’re like me, you will be sitting down to a nutritious meal filled with warm memories from years gone by.

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