Tuesday, November 11

HOW TO: Make Chicken Soup

In the autumn I often make soup. It is great for cooler days, lunches, and occasionally bringing to friends feeling under the weather. I often get asked for my recipe so today I am going to share with you, how to make an easy but delicious chicken soup.

The first thing to know about making chicken soup is time, you need at least two hours to make a really good fully from scratch chicken soup. If you want a short cut, you can use leftover chicken or precooked chicken and save an hour.

1-This recipe takes 2 hours and makes a huge pot of soup.

The second thing to know is flavor, since chicken soup contains very few main ingredients, you need to make the most out of each of them. Unseasoned ingredients will not combine to create a full flavor soup, they will combine to create a bland soup. So start with the best you can!

2-For this recipe, you are going to need-

1 1/2 lb chicken (I am using a half chicken)
12 cups chicken stock low or no sodium
4 cups water
2 cups uncooked small pasta
2 cups diced carrots(1 bunch)
2 cups diced celery(1 bunch)
1/2 cup fine diced onion(1 medium)
2 tbsp butter
1 chicken bouillon cube
Salt and pepper to taste

Now it is time to get started, the first hour is easy. Place chicken into a large pot, season with salt and pepper then fill with water(not included in recipe) enough to just cover over chicken. *For added flavor  you can use a rub on chicken, mine has a BBQ dry rub on it.

Boil chicken, yes boil, uncover for 45-60 minutes or until no pink can been seen when cutting into chicken.

When finished cooking-Drain pot and run chicken under cool water.

For pasta preperation, you can do this while chicken cooks-
In a small pot combine water and bouillon cube, bring to boil. This will be for your pasta. 

When boiling cook pasta according to time on package, by cooking pasta in a seperate pot you will avoid it sucking up all the broth in your soup. By using a bouillon cube, you empart the broth flavor into the pasta.

Once pasta is cooked, drain and set aside.

Once chicken is cooked we can begin the actual soup.

In a stock pot, melt butter over medium heat.

Add in onion and allow to cook 5 minutes to soften nicely.

Once onion is softened, add in carrots and celery, season with salt and pepper, then pour in 1 cup stock.

Allow stock to come to a boil, stir and allow vegetable to cook 10-15 minutes to begin to soften. Stir occasionally and make sure there is always a tiny bit of liquid in the pot, add some if needed.

While these cook, we can finish the chicken. You need to carefully remove all bones from chicken. I like to place a seperate bowl along side the strainer and pull the chicken off into small bite dize pieces, this ensures no bones are in the piece and move chicken meat into the bowl.

If the chicken is hot to touch, just run cool water over it as you seperate it from the bones. Once it is all seperated put it to the side along with your cooked pasta.

Back to the stock pot, by now vegetables are softened and ready to go.

Add chicken into the pot and stir to incorporate.

Add 4 cups of stock, or just enough to come right to the top of your mixture and let cook 10 minutes without stirring.

Add in 4 cups stock and bring to a boil.

Then reduce heat to medium low, cover and cook 20 minutes or until vegeatables are cooked through.

Add in remaining stock and pasta, increase heat to medium high and cook 10 minutes, this will allow pasta to absorb some broth from the pot.

Check for seasoning, adjust if needed, and you are done, now you just need to serve.