Chicken Noodle Soup

Chicken Noodle Soup

As I may have mentioned before, we’ve had plague circulating through our household the last two weeks. First Mr. Man, then me, now Miss Thing. Sad thing is, I got it, just as Mr. Man was feeling better – and Miss Thing got it, just as ~I~ was feeling better. Fortunately, now that I was feeling better, I had the energy to make Miss Thing some soup to help her get over her cold. Unfortunately, she has suddenly decided that she hates soup and all things soup related, ah – to be a teenager where everything only appears in blacks and whites, and anything a parent does is evil.

At any rate, after some finangling, she agreed to have some – and if she didn’t thank me, I’m sure her poor beleagured sore throat did. Mr. Man and I thought this turned out incredibly excellent, and I’m not sure why she chose to turn her nose up at it, but it’s probably some obscure hormonal difficult teen thing.

For the pasta in this dish, I used some leftover Browned Butter Pasta – which turned out really freaking excellent, if I do say so myself, but you could use regular cooked pasta of any kind. This makes a fairly large pot (I was making planned leftovers), but could easily be halved.

The nice thing about this recipe is you can kind of build it as you go. For instance, while I was cooking the lentils, I was simultaneously preparing and simmering the rest of the soup. The whole thing actually only took about an hour to make – roughly. I cooked the lentils separately, because I wanted to be able to cook the potatoes and carrots in the broth – with salt! to allow them to absorb the flavor without ruining the texture of the lentils. Lentils, as with most beans, can not be cooked with salt or they become tough. This step could be skipped if you would like to substitute a can or 2 cups of another kind of cooked beans of some kind for the lentils. For the Pasta, I recommend placing it in the bowls as you are serving – rather than stirring in to the soup, and allowing the heat of the soup to warm up the noodles – mostly because I hate mushy noodles. If you like mushy noodles, feel free to stir the noodles in just before serving.

Ingredients:

  • 3 and 1/2 quarts Scrap Stock or Chicken Stock (divided – and brought to room temperature)
  • 1 Cup Lentils; washed and picked over
  • 3 Shallots; chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic; minced
  • 2 Potatoes; peeled and cut in to 1/2 inch chunks
  • 2 Carrots; peeled and cut in to thin slices
  • 5 Crimini Mushrooms; sliced
  • 4 tbls butter
  • 4 tbls flour
  • 4 cups Al dente Cooked Spoon-friendly Pasta Noodles (such as Macaroni)
  • 1 lb chicken breast; cooked and cut up in to chunks
  • 1 tsp Olive Oil
  • 1 sprig rosemary; de-stemmed and finely minced
  • 1 tbls Fresh Thyme; finely minced
  • 1 tbls Fresh Tarragon; finely minced
  • 1/4 cup Fresh Italian Parsley; finely minced
  • 1 tbls White Wine (to Taste)
  • 1 tbls Champagne Vinegar (to taste)
  • 1 tbls Kosher Salt (to taste)

Method:

  • While assembling other ingredients, Cook the lentils:
  • In a small saucepan, bring 1/2 a quart of Stock to a boil.
  • Stir in Lentils. Cover and reduce heat Cook for 45 minutes or until tender and liquid is absorbed. – See Note
  • When the Lentils are cooked, they can be added to soup – pretty much anytime.
  • In a large soup pot, melt the butter.
  • Add Shallots to Butter and saute until translucent
  • Whisk in Flour
  • Cook over medium heat until flour mixture becomes lightly browned.
  • Whisk in the remaining broth
  • Bring Stock to a simmer and then stir in Garlic, Potatoes, Carrots, Rosemary and Thyme and Salt
  • Cover and reduce heat
  • While that starts to cook, saute the mushrooms:
  • Over Medium Heat; add oil and mushrooms to a skillet.
  • Saute until mushrooms are lightly browned and tender
  • Add Mushrooms to Soup
  • Simmer Soup for 45 minutes, or until vegetables are tender and cooked through
  • Stir in Chicken, Parsley and Tarragon
  • Add Vinegar and Wine to taste.
  • To Serve, place cooked noodles in bowl. Ladle soup over noodles. Do not add noodles to the soup unless you like mushy, mushy noodles.

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