Chicken soup is not just for winter. I’ll admit I am not a big soup fan in the summer especially the thick creamy kinds. But I can eat chicken soup at any time of year. No, I am not going to serve it at my next summer barbecue but there is nothing better than a nice warm bowl of chicken soup on a rainy April day. It is also one of those great meals that can be made in advance or pulled out of the freezer.
Every time I make chicken soup, it comes out a little different. Sometimes I like orzo, other times I’m in the mood for tortellini. This time, I used thin egg noodles to go in the soup. But I always start out with a rich homemade chicken stock. I make it in big batches and store it in the freezer. The noodles go in last so that they are not soggy. My stock is always filled with veggies as they make the soup so flavorful.
Last month, I was contacted by Gold’ n Plump Chicken to try some of their chicken. They are a mid-west based company and they boast an all natural chicken. The chicken was premium quality and I am happy that I can purchase it at my local Target store. I sampled several types of their chicken including ground chicken, chicken drumsticks and marinated chicken breasts. I decided to try the drumsticks in this soup that I made. They really produced wonderful stock and the chicken was really juicy without any visible fat to trim.
So if you want to make your own chicken soup here are some tips:
- Make a really big batch so you can freeze some. You can double the recipe below but make sure not to add noodles until you reheat the soup.
- I use various noodles or starches. Some of my favorites are orzo, rice, noodles and tortellini. You can also use potatoes instead of noodles.
- The longer the stock cooks, the more flavorful it is. Onions and celery are not the only veggies that can be added to flavor the soup. Some other favorites are parsnips, leeks, garlic and chives. You can also use your favorite herbs.
- Add salt and pepper to your taste.
- 6 to 8 chicken legs (about 1½ lbs)
- a large pot of water
- 2 large onions, peeled and quartered
- 3 large stalks of celery, trimmed
- a handful of parsley and dill or other favorite herbs
- 2 large carrots, chopped
- salt and pepper to taste
- 8 ounces noodles
- Put the chicken in a large soup pot and fill with water. Cover and cook on low heat for 2 hours. Chicken should be falling off the bone.
- Strain broth and remove bones and skin from chicken. Chop the chicken into small pieces. Discard the bones and skin along with the strained veggies. Skim broth for any extra fat. Add salt and pepper to taste.
- Pour broth in the pot and add the carrots and chicken. Cook on low for about 20 minutes. Add noodles and cook ala dente or according to package directions (anywhere from 6 to 12 minutes.)
- Fresh herbs can also be chopped and added at the end of cooking.
*Disclaimer: GoldnPlump sent me free samples of their chicken but I was not compensated for this post. As usual, all opinions are my own.