Saturday, March 8, 2014

Chicken Noodle Soup from Scratch

My grandma always made the best chicken noodle soup when I was a kid - she was the only one who actually made it.  And when I say she made it, I mean she made it all from scratch, nothing from a can, no bagged noodles.  When I was in college I asked her for the recipe and she said that there wasn't one (she didn't make much of anything from an actual recipe), but she said she would show me and I could write it down if wanted to.  So that is exactly what I did one Saturday morning I went to her house armed with a pen and paper, she already had the chicken boiling and HER apron was on the counter waiting for ME.  The rest is left to memories.  Each time I make this simple, yet delicious soup for my family it brings back so many fond memories of my grandma; I love telling my children about her.

Here's What You'll Need:
2 carrots, chopped
2 celery ribs, chopped
1 sm. onion, chopped
2 large eggs
1 1/4 cups flour
1 tsp. salt
4 chicken thighs
1 T. celery seeds
1 bay leaf
salt to taste

Easy Step By Step Instructions:

This much I know is true; almost every good soup starts out with a handful of good vegetables.  This soup is no different; a couple carrots, a little celery and some onion.  I like to use the hearts and leaves of celery in my soup.  I find that while its not the best for snacking on, it packs a great amount of flavor that is excellent in soup.

Chop up your carrots, celery and onion.  My husband got me this snazzy food processor for Christmas this year so I'm putting it to good use, but by all means you can chop this stuff by hand; I always have before!  I sliced everything in the food processor this time; I even quartered the onion and sliced that too.  Put your veggies, celery seeds and bay leaf in a stock pot with some homemade chicken broth and the chicken thighs. (Any time I boil chicken I cool the broth, skim the fat and freeze the broth in a zip top bag.)  You may used canned broth in this recipe, but it won't taste like grandmas!  Boil the chicken until it is fully cooked, let it cool then de-bone it and set it aside.

Place the dough blade in the food processor, add two eggs,  1/4 cups flour and 1 teaspoon of salt.  Pulse the  food processor until everything is nicely incorporated then add one tablespoon of milk while the blade is running.

The mixture will be crumbly but can easily be pressed into a ball.  It should not be sticky; if it is sticky add enough flour to make it more firm.  If you don't have a food processor, simply mix all of the ingredients in a bowl with a fork (that's how my grandma always did it).

Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and let it rest in the refrigerator for 30 minutes or more.

Once the dough has rested it's time to roll it out.  Keep your surface and your dough well floured so nothing sticks (that's the worst!).  Roll the dough very thin rectangle shape with a rolling pin, about 1/8 inch thick.

Once the dough is rolled out thin, flour it very well on the top side, so that in the next step the dough doesn't stick together.

Roll the dough up cinnamon roll style.

Cut the rolled dough into spirals that are about 1/4 inch wide.  I like to use a filet knife because the blade is so thin and its very sharp.  Gently glide your knife blade through the dough; don't press the knife down too hard or your layers of dough will be all squished together and you'll end up with hard blobs instead of tender noodles.

Unroll the spirals of dough.  I like to unroll mine as I work, or better yet, let one of your little helpers do it!

Once the noodles are unrolled, slice them into manageable pieces about 1.5 - 2 inches long.  Truth be told I like to leave mine long, but it makes them a little hard for the kids to eat.

Bring your chicken broth and veggies to a rolling boil and add all of the noodles, letting any extra/loose flour fall away.  The noodles take about 15 minutes to fully cook.

The noodles should plump up nicely.

Add the chicken meat back into the soup and heat it through.  Remove the bay leaf.

Enjoy a large bowl of homemade chicken noodle soup with your family.  This pot of soup should offer 4 hearty servings.

And to answer your question, yes the soup is better the second day but who can wait that long?

The Consolidated Version:

Noodles: Combine eggs, salt, milk, and flour with a fork, using
enough flour to make a ball of dough. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap
and refrigerate for 30 minutes. Roll the dough out very thin with a
rolling pin, about 1⁄8 inch thick. Flour the dough well and roll it into a spiral and slice
into ¼ inch sections. Unroll the noodles and let set until ready to use.
Soup: Boil chicken, celery, carrots and onion seasoned with celery seed,
bay leaf and salt to taste. When the chicken is done remove it from
broth, debone and chop into pieces. Stir in noodles, cook until tender about 15 minutes.
Add chicken to soup, remove bay leaf and serve.

The Printable Version

1 comment:

  1. I've taken the time to do it this way only once in my life. So much work (and mess), but it does taste so much better (and so much better for you). Sure could go for a bowl right now to get rid of this pesky sore throat!