Friday, January 17, 2014

Back to Basics: Chicken Soup

Chicken soup is one of the most important "need to know" recipes.  Whether you are sick or you simply want a bowl of delicious soup that instantly reminds you of home, this soup fits the bill.

Simply dump all the ingredients into a pot, and then let it sit on the stove for 3-4 hours.  Yes, it does take a while to make, but your patience is well worth it.

When it's cold out, and you're not leaving the house anyway, why not throw this on the stove?  It's a perfect winter lazy day recipe.

Chicken Soup
Makes about 6-8 servings

1 5-6 lb chicken (I used two 3 lb chickens)
1 1/2 onions, peeled and cut in half
4 carrots, washed
6 stalks of celery, including leaves (feel free to trim an inch or two off the bottom though)
15 springs of parsley
7 sprigs of dill
1 tablespoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
  1. Rinse both the inside and the outside of the chicken with cold water.  Pat thoroughly with a paper towel to dry.
  2. Place chicken in a large stockpot.  Then add the onions, carrots, celery, parsley, dill, salt, and pepper.
  3. Fill the rest of the pot with filtered water.
  4. Bring the pot to a boil, and then let it simmer for one hour. 
  5. After one hour, remove the chicken from the pot.  Let the chicken cool slightly.  Remove the breast meat from the chicken, using a knife or kitchen scissors.  Set the breast meat in the fridge, and then return the rest of the chicken to the pot.
  6. Let the soup simmer, uncovered, for three more hours.  
  7. Remove the soup from the heat. Strain the soup through a fine mesh strainer.  Take the leftover vegetables (onions, carrots, and celery) and dice them,  Add the vegetables back to the broth.  
  8. Cover the broth, and let it chill in the fridge.  The fat will separate from the broth.  Use a spoon to remove any fat that rises to the surface.
  9. Shred leftover chicken breast from step 5 using either your hands or a fork.  Add the breast meat back to the soup.
  10. To serve, simply heat the broth again on the stove.  If you prefer, you can add in fresh parsley and dill.   

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