Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Best Chicken Noodle Soup - Truly!


1 Tbsp vegetable oil (actually you would need much more, enough to brown the chicken)
1 (4-lb) whole chicken, breast removed, split, and reserved; remain chicken cut into 2-inch pieces
1 onion, chopped
8 cups boiling water
2 tsp salt
2 bay leaves

Heat oil in Dutch oven over medium-high heat until shimmering.  Add half of the chicken pieces (reserving breast pieces) and cook until lightly browned, about 5 minutes per side.  Transfer to bowl and repeat with remaining chicken pieces; transfer to bowl with first batch.  Add onion and cook, stirring frequently, until onion is translucent, 3 to 5 minutes.  Return chicken pieces to pot.  Reduce heat to low, cover, and cook until chicken releases its juices, about 20 minutes.

Increase heat to high; add boiling water, 2 tsp salt, 2 bay leaves, and reserved chicken breast pieces. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer until flavor have blended, about 20 minutes.  Remove breast pieces from pot.  Continue to simmer the stock further if you have time.

When breast pieces are cool enough to handle, remove the skin from breassts, then remove meat from bones and shred into bite-size pieces; discard skin and bones.  Strain stock through fine-mesh strainer; discard solids.  Allow liquid to settle, about 5 minutes, then skim off fat; reserve 2 tablespoons.  

After skimming stock, shredded chicken, cooled stock, and reserved fat can be refrigerated in separate containers up to 2 days.

1 onion, chopped
1 large carrot, peeled and sliced 1/4 inch thick
1 celery rib, sliced 1/4 inch thick
1/2 tsp dried thyme
3 ounces egg noodles
1/4 cup minced fresh parsley
salt and pepper

Heat reserved chicken fat in Dutch oven over medium-high heat (or use oil).  Add onion, celery, carrot and cook until softened, about 5 minutes.  Add stock and thyme and simmer until vegetables are tender, 10 to 15 minutes.
Add noodles and shredded chicken and cook until just tender, 5 to 8 minutes.  Stir in parsley, season with salt and pepper to taste, and serve