A bowl of homemade chicken noodle soup is one of the most comforting foods you can place on your table. Itâ€™s a great way to show off the hearty goodness of homemade chicken broth. Itâ€™s also a great way to show off your creativity by personalizing the flavour whichever way you want.
Yield: Makes 4 servings
A splash vegetable oil
1 carrot, peeled and finely diced
1 stalk celery, finely diced
1 onion, peeled and finely diced
2 or 3 cloves garlic, thinly sliced (optional)
4 cups chicken broth
1 cup shredded meat from broth (optional)
1 cup your favorite noodle or pasta
A handful flat leaf parsley, chopped
A few sprigs fresh thyme, stems removed, leaves minced
1 thinly sliced green onion
Splash the vegetable oil into a stockpot, enough to cover the bottom in a thin film. Begin heating over medium-high heat. Add the vegetables and sautÃ© them for a few minutes, heating them through and brightening their flavours.
Add the chicken broth and bring it to a simmer. Add the chicken meat, if using, and the noodles or pasta and continue cooking until the noodles are tender. Stir in the parsley, fresh thyme and green onion. Serve immediately.
You can add any vegetable or fresh herb you like to this soup. You can also use a favourite flavour theme like Mediterranean, stirring in zucchini, sun-dried tomatoes and a spoonful or two of Basil Pesto, or Southwestern, with tomatoes, bell peppers, chili peppers, chili powder, cumin and cilantro.
I often braise chicken thighs for dinner; they have infinite varieties of preparation and go well with just about any side dish. They are flavour sponges too! In this version I pair the woodsy aroma of rosemary with the subtle flavour of vanilla. Try experimenting with other seasonings for different flavours.
The thighs of a chicken are my favourite cut. Theyâ€™re inexpensive and have way more flavour than the bland breast. I usually braise them because itâ€™s easy and they go with just about anything. I love the way they soak up the earthy flavours of the mushrooms in this dish.