Chicken Noodle Soup

(PDF) This is super long because I am very verbose, it isn’t hard, I promise. Also sorry the page name is duplicated, working out a style-bug.

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb of chicken
  • 1 large onion (yellow or Spanish). Dice this into cubes (to the extent of ability, don’t sweat it if they aren’t perfect)
  • 2-3 carrots. Dice this into small slices (to the extent of ability, don’t sweat it if they aren’t perfect)
  • 2-3 stalks of celery Dice this into small slices (to the extent of ability, don’t sweat it if they aren’t perfect)
  • If you don’t feel well enough to fuss with it, buy the “pre-sliced” kind in the plastic jugs in the produce isle. More expensive but less work.
  • A few gloves of garlic (you will crush this later if you have a garlic press — if not, dice into the smallest pieces you can without worrying “oh dear this isn’t perfect” — as good as you can is fine, this is soup)
  • Herbs (stores sometimes sell “poultry blend” which is great, get rosemary. If the herbs are cheap or if you have the cash, get thyme, oregano, and/or sage in this order of resources)
  • 3 boxes of Chicken Stock. I prefer “Kitchen Basics” (bright yellow box) but it can be a bit pricy. “Swansons” works well too and is cheaper. If you see multiple box sizes, look for the one that is a giant juice box.
  • 1/3 to 1/2 box of pasta, unless you’re postiviely pasta-tastic, in which case a full box. Any shape noodle (or multiple shapes, which drives people NUTS, but I love)
  • Bread (French or sourdough) if you want something heartier.

Instructions

  1. Cook pasta according to box instructions/your desired level of “done-ness” in Pot A while you do the following. Everything else listed should be done in a large stew pot (“Pot B”)
  2. Chop all vegetables and put into separate bowls. Store in fridge.
  3. De-bone / de-skin chicken breasts (or buy the boneless/skinless)
  4. Pat dry chicken dry with a paper towel
  5. Season all sides of the chicken with salt and pepper. If you enjoy hot, add cayenne pepper. Also helps with sinuses.
  6. Pour olive or vegetable oil into cooking pot (whatever kind you have is fine). Just a little bit to coat the bottom of the pan. If aren’t sure, start with a table spoon (“Tbl” on spoon). Add a bit more if necessary. Swirl pan around so oil coats bottom.
  7. Turn stove onto “high” and allow to get hot (2-3 mintues).
  8. Sear chicken, all sides. Just sear (the surface is cooked but the inside is not).
  9. Put chicken in bowl, put in fridge.
  10. Get pot hot again (1-2 minutes is fine, it needs to warm up after having been cooled by the chicken)
  11. Lower heat to “medium” on stove
  12. Throw in diced onion, stir until about half way to translucent (3-4 minutes probably)
  13. Throw in chopped celery and carrots, cook a few minutes (2-3 minutes)
  14. Throw in diced garlic. Crush it with a garlic press if you have one or throw in chopped bits if you do not.
  15. Get herbs. Rub them with your fingers a bit to open up the oils and leaves. Put into pot.
  16. Stir everything, cooking for a minute or two on “Medium” heat.
  17. Fill pot with chicken stock / broth.
  18. Season to taste (a little salt, pepper, cayenne pepper)
  19. Throw in chicken. Use a spoon or rubber spatula to clean the bowl into the pot (that chicken bits that came out while it was cooling in the fridge is pure seasoning)
  20. Allow to simmer until chicken is cooked (probably 20-25 minutes), stirring every 5 minutes or so.
  21. Throw in cooked and drained pasta (I prefer a mixed variety though this tends to drive people nuts). Your pasta can be cooked and wait patiently while everything comes together.
  22. Taste, add salt or pepper as necessary.
  23. Read comic books and watch cartoons until you feel better.
  24. Think about the moon maybe? It is lovely.