OK, so you have several cups of freshly made, aromatic, virtually fat-free, and utterly delicious chicken stock. My last stockpile of frozen chicken bones, fat, and skin yielded 28 cups of stock! My freezer runneth over. So what to do now?
At the very least, make chicken noodle soup. It is easily one of the most delicious meals ever created and is a basic cooking skill that you should have in your arsenal. Chicken noodle soup is the utmost in comfort food, and very therapeutic. Easy? Couldn’t be simpler. Assuming your stock is thawed figure about 20 minutes total. Here’s the recipe:
Chicken Noodle Soup
- 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 1 yellow onion, peeled and chopped
- 2 large carrots (as orange as possible), peeled, sliced crosswise into 1/4-inch pieces
- 2 large celery stalks (as green as possible), sliced crosswise into 1/4-inch pieces
- 1/2 – 3/4 teaspoon dried poultry seasoning, or 1/4 each teaspoon dried thyme and sage, to taste
- 1/3 cup white wine
- 6 cups chicken stock
- 2 cups (at least) cooked chicken, coarsely chopped
- 4 ounces noodles–egg noodles, rotini, penne, shells, they all work
- salt and pepper to taste
- Chopped flat-leaf parsley or celery leaves, as garnish
In a large pot or Dutch oven heat the olive oil. Add the onion, carrot, and celery; saute over medium-low heat for about 5-7 minutes until softened and very slightly browned. Stir in poultry seasoning(s). Add the white wine and deglaze the pan. Boil and reduce the wine by half.
Add the chicken stock and the chicken. Heat over medium heat until soup is nearly boiling. Add the pasta, and keeping the soup at a near boil, cook the noodles about 6 minutes. Test a noodle for al dente doneness.
Taste the soup for seasonings, add salt and pepper to taste. Garnish with parsley or celery leaves.
Serve it up, knowing that comfort food doesn’t get better than this.
VARIATIONS: You can doctor this recipe several ways to make it your own: Add a couple of minced garlic cloves and/or 1/2 cup of sliced mushrooms to the sauteed veggies; add a chopped potato to the nearly boiling stock; add a can of evaporated milk just before serving to enrich the stock and make a bisque-like soup. It’s all good!