Homemade Chicken Noodle Soup
What a weekend to get sick.
Dan and I — both new-ish and not-very-good curlers — were playing in our first-ever bonspiel, along with two pals, Keith and Keith, from the newsroom. This made us the sole “current-Postmedia / post-Postmedia” team in the Edmonton Media Bonspiel.
Dan, the Keiths and I did a bit of practicing on Thursday night, the bonspiel started on Friday, and I don’t know what happened but we were on fire. We won on Friday. We won our first game on Saturday. We made it into the Sunday final rounds. As happy skip Keith G. noted: “We’ve already over-achieved!”
By Saturday morning, I was also on fire — due to fever. By Saturday noon, I started losing my voice. And by Sunday’s trophy match (we lost, in a good match against one of the CTV teams), having spent four hours on an ice surface, I was now cold through to the bones, my throat was burning, every cough rattled.
We didn’t stay for the post-game pint (you know I’m feeling poorly when I will miss Post-Game Beer) and headed home where I was focused on two things: a hot bath and homemade chicken noodle soup.
It’s true, you know, the whole thing about chicken soup making you feel better when are under the weather. This story from the Santa Cruz Sentinel sums up the health benefits quite concisely: “The hot broth helps to get the blood flowing in your upper respiratory system, and it helps loosen congestion. Plus, the salty liquid helps you stay hydrated while also flushing out viruses from your system. Throw in a few carrots for beneficial beta carotene, which is good for epithelial cells, which are the ones lining your throat and lungs.”
See? Proven health benefits, plus it is dead easy to make, plus it uses the most basic ingredients in the house — chicken, broth, onions, carrots, celery and noodles.
Perfect. Except we hadn’t shopped in a while so were flat out of some of the basics — the celery and any kind of usable noodle.
I can take celery or leave it, but no noodles? That was not negotiable.
In the end, it turned into a creative way to sneak a Kitchen Castoff into the day. Somehow, a package of Lipton’s Chicken Noodle soup had snuck into a grocery cart some time ago. We just separated the noodles from the abnormally yellow “chicken flavouring” and voila. Noodles.
Talk about hitting the spot. Or, as we say out on the sheet, putting it right on the button.
Kitchen Castoff Used
Noodles from a package of Lipton’s Chicken Noodle Soup
This is how we did it
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 4 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs
- 1 onion, chopped
- 3 – 4 cloves garlic
- 2 carrots, chopped
- 2 stalks celery, chopped
- 1/2 red pepper, diced
- 5 – 6 cups chicken broth (or mixture of broth and water)
- 1 tsp thyme
- 1 bay leaf
- Noodles or pasta
Heat olive oil over medium-high heat in a large saucepan or Dutch oven. Brown the chicken (skin-side down) for 5 – 8 minutes, then flip and brown on the side. Remove to a plate.
Into the same pot, put the onion, celery, carrot and red pepper and garlic, then cook, stirring, until tender, scraping up the brown bits on the bottom of the pot. While the vegetables are cooking, remove the skins from the chicken thighs then pull or cut the partially cooked meat off the bones and cut into chunks. When the vegetables are cooked, add the diced chicken along with the bones (for extra flavour) to the pot.
Add the stock (or stock and water), plus the thyme and bay leaf. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat, cover and let simmer for about half an hour or longer. When everything is cooked, remove the thigh bones and the bay leaf
For the noodles, you can cook them separately then add to the pot or you can put them in the pot with the soup and cook them right in the soup liquid.
Taste the soup and add salt and pepper as you see fit.
Curious about my “Kitchen Castoffs” concept? Here’s the explainer describing my 100-day project.
Are you enjoying these blog posts? If you are, share the joy and use one of the handy buttons on this page to post a link to Facebook, Twitter or Pinterest. Thanks!