Roasty Chicken Soup

Dear Readers, I am sorry I have been out of touch. This has been a crazy January. My family situation has changed: I am now the custodial grandparent of a seven-year-old boy; now enrolled in first grade. I am loving having Aiden here but it has been complicated to set up and a bit of an adjustment. Been too busy and too tired to write posts late at night like I used to. Plus, I got sick last Saturday with a small cold and a serious case of laryngitis. Snow days yesterday and today are allowing my voice to heal and to give me time to catch up with the wreck of my daily life!  The roads today forced a late closure and so we are home spending quality time together. He is taking a nap; wish I was! And I am finally writing a post.

Sick with a cold absolutely seems to require chicken soup. I made mine from scratch, of course! Actually, I made the broth in my Instant Pot and then roasted some veggies in my broiler. My oven has been very difficult in recent weeks. I felt lucky to get the oven to turn on for a bit after I browned the vegetables on a tray in the broiler area of my smaller oven. I believe this is a trendy thing to do for soup and it is also a great way to easily add deep flavor to your soup veggies. I will give you my whole recipe; you can buy some broth or make it however you prefer to. I find it extra easy to do it in my IP!  I was super pleased with how much richer and more flavorful it came out: better than any chicken soup I have ever made. And that pot of homemade chicken broth helped enrich the flavor a lot. Worth the effort and you get all that great cooked chicken.  Super easy to do actually; and well worth it if you want a great start to a homemade soup. It goes without saying that you could put cooked rice in this soup instead of noodles. Enjoy!

Here is my pot of chilled homemade chicken broth.  Pure gold~~

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cold homemade chicken broth

 

Angie’s Roasty Chicken Noodle Soup

Broth Ingredients

1 whole small chicken; 3-4 lbs

1-2 stalks celery broken into large chunks

1 small carrot; broken similarly

1 small-medium onion peeled and sliced into fat wedges

2 big garlic cloves, peeled

1 tsp. kosher salt, ¼ tsp. freshly ground black pepper

1-2 bay leaves

1 tsp. chopped rosemary (optional)

Put the carrot, celery and onion chunks in the IP pot; add the whole chicken to the IP: don’t forget to remove the giblets and all plastic packaging! Add all the rest of the ingredients and add filtered water to barely cover the bird. Put on the lid, set the manual pressure to 35 minutes and let’r rip! Allow it to naturally release for 10-15 minutes before opening.  Let cool; remove bird and cut up; throw out everything but the meat. Strain the broth; throwing out all the worn-out veggies left in your colander. There; amazing broth!

roasty veggies

Veggie Ingredients:

1 large onion, cut into wedges

2 celery stalks; cut into 3-4 inch lengths

2 carrots; cut into sticks

1-2 garlic cloves, unpeeled

1 turnip or rutabaga (optional but I love it’s earthy flavor) cut into wedges; size of onion wedges [you could use mushrooms instead]

Put veggies on a baking tray you sprayed with cooking spray. Pour some EVOL on; 1-2 Tbsp. Stir around to coat. Sprinkle with ½ tsp. sea salt and a bit of black pepper if you like. Broil for 10-20 min; checking frequently. I turned mine over once the top side got well browned. A few blackened bits are okay; they add flavor! But don’t burn the heck out of the veggies or you will have to start over. Once all is browned and tender pull out and let cool.

roasty chicken soup in pot

Ingredients for finishing soup:

¾ cup broken wide gf egg noodles or rice noodles

big sprig of fresh thyme

½ cup frozen peas

2 Tbsp. fresh parsley

1-2 cups chopped cooked chicken

Pour the broth into a large sauce pan. Heat. Chop coarsely the roasted veggies, removing the garlic clove outer skin.  Add them to the soup. Let heat; add about ¾ cup broken wide gf egg noodles or rice noodles. And a big sprig of fresh thyme. Cook as long as the package says. In the last 3 minutes add ½ cup frozen peas and 2 Tbsp. fresh parsley. Taste and add more salt/pepper as you wish. Add 1 cup chopped cooked chicken from the broth making and serve as soon as it is hot. Enjoy! roasty chicken soup

 

 

 

Zingy Chicken Coconut Stew

Cold winter, sniffles, chilly fingers: all great reasons to make soup, especially chicken soup.  But I found myself wanting something more, a big bowl of soup with a ton of flavor and some zip in it. So I threw together a quick soup using some broth I made the other day in my Instant Pot electric pressure cooker; to make the broth I put in the roasted chicken carcass and a bit of celery and carrot plus lots of water on for 30 minutes on high pressure and after straining I had a nice container full of rich chicken broth.  I added lots and lots of veggies as well as some great aromatics: slivered fresh ginger and a big clove of garlic. To pull the flavors together I poured in half a can of light coconut milk and added a handful of broken up raw rice noodles (any brand of wide rice noodles will work). Added some cubed roasted chicken and in no time at all I was slurping down this excellently flavored chicken coconut stew. It was like I was eating at a beach soup shack in the islands feeling the warm sea breeze through my hair…  Light zingy flavor and tender chicken with lots of fresh vegetables.  Man, was it yummy and healthy!  Totally guilt free and naturally gluten free if you are careful in choosing your broth.

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Not the greatest picture but you can see it is chock full of rice noodles and veggies.

Angie’s Chicken Coconut Stew

2 medium sized carrots cut on diagonal into thin coins

2 celery stalks, cut on thin diagonal slices

1 onion cut down the top to bottoms, peeled and cut into long strips

1 tbsp. mild olive oil

1 large garlic clove minced

½ cup chopped green cabbage

2 baby bok choy cut into one inch lengths, bases cut in quarters or eighths

1 quart chicken broth; preferably homemade

4 rounds of thinly sliced fresh ginger cut into narrow strips

½ a can of light coconut milk

1 cup pea pods

½ cup crushed rice noodles

Pinch crushed red pepper flakes

1-2 cups cubed cooked chicken (I used leftover roasted chicken breast)

Directions: Sauté carrots, celery and onion in large soup pot in the hot oil on medium heat: about 4-5 minutes, do not brown, add garlic; cook 1 minute, add bok choy and then the broth.  Heat to nearly boiling and add the ginger and cabbage, cook 1-2 minutes. Add the coconut milk, rice noodles, red pepper flakes and pea pods.  Turn heat down to very low and cook 7 to 9 minutes until noodles are cooked through.

Notes: The amounts of veggies are as fluid as you want to be; leave out something you dislike or don’t have or use more/less of any veggie. I used frozen snow peas as I couldn’t find fresh in the store.  My coconut milk was organic, thin and wasn’t too strongly coconuty. Perfect for this stew. lt-coconut-milkI used baby bok choy but a couple stalks of regular will work just as well; might need to cook slightly longer than the baby choy. If you use store broth: Kitchen Basics has really good gf chicken broth; one 32 ounce box container should do it.  I used home roasted chicken breast but you could use a rotisserie bird, although I suggest you check for gluten free before choosing that route as some stores make their birds with ingredients that make it not gluten free so not safe for those with celiac disease.

Enjoy!

I Be Feeling Sick Chicken Soup!

When you feel ill, like with the flu, a cold, an icky stomach bug, or if you get glutened, you want to eat something warm and soothing.  Something healthy that will stay down and feel happy in your tummy.  Something like homemade chicken soup.  That is where I was at when I made this Oriental chicken soup.  I was gutened by something the day before and still felt not well enough to eat regular food.  So I whipped up a small batch of fresh soup with homemade chicken broth I had leftover from this past weekend. This soup took less than 30 minutes, some of that actively chopping and some just allowing it to cook. Just the ticket when you are under the weather and have no pre-made soup to reheat: whip this up and you are set for several delicious meals.

I suppose you can make this soup with canned broth; be sure it is gluten free if you have celiac disease like I do.  Homemade is going to make it more flavorful but sometimes you just don’t have time to make fresh broth.  And if you don’t like sesame oil leave it out.  The pea pods, onion, ginger, garlic, parsley and celery leaves are very healthy additions and they each add great flavor. Ginger is particularly good if your tummy feels poorly. I often keep a bit of it frozen in a freezer ziplock baggie so it is there for a quick grate into a dish. I like the pad thai noodles; made of rice so they are easier on the tummy than egg noodles.

Don’t freak out if you only have one carrot or don’t want as much of any ingredient; make it your way.  I sometimes fail to measure as I make soup so some of these ingredients are a bit fluid.  As a young adult I would ask my mom to give me her recipes and got very frustrated by her un-measuring way of cooking.  These days I estimate or eyeball some ingredients.  Use your good judgment and what you have on hand in your pantry/fridge.

If you don’t want meat in it; leave it out. If I am really ill I do that; easier to digest without that protein. You could buy a rotisserie chicken but if you are gf; check the labeling; not many stores make gf rotisserie chicken. I used leftover roasted chicken breast from a family supper. Roasted chicken has a lot of flavor compared to steamed or poached.

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Angie’s I Be Sick Chicken Soup

1 tbsp olive oil

1 medium yellow onion, peeled and diced

2 carrots, washed but unpeeled, sliced into rounds

2 celery stalks diced including the leaves; separate them from stalks

1 garlic clove, peel and mince

About 2-3 tsp coarsely grated fresh or frozen ginger

1 quart of chicken broth

1 tsp. sesame oil

A handful of pad thai rice noodles

½ cup pea pods

½ to 1 tsp. sea salt

1 to 1½ cups diced chicken breast

Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan; I used a two quart one.  Add the diced onion and carrots.  Cook the soup, stirring frequently; about 2-3 minutes.  Add the celery stalks and the minced garlic clove, cook approximately 3 more minutes.  Add the broth which you have heated.  Stir and add the fresh ginger and sesame oil.

Heat 1.5 cups of water in a microwave safe container and add the rice noodles.  I like to break them up somewhat or they are a mess to slurp down. Up to you! Let them stand ten minutes while the soup cooks.

Cook the broth and veggies 8 minutes, add the celery leaves and pea pods which you coarsely chopped.  Cook 3 more minutes.  Add sea salt to taste and the chicken breast.  Stir and heat a minute or two.  Taste and adjust the salt. Add fresh ground black pepper to taste.

Pour in bowls.  I topped mine with some pea pod micro greens I grew in a pot at my kitchen windowsill.  Perfect meal when you want to sooth an iffy tummy.

One Last Hot Soup for Winter 2015: Chicken Curry Noodle

Recently I fell ill with a pesky respiratory ailment and as I got sicker my body craved that old folk remedy: chicken noodle soup.  But, I was tired of the same old chicken soup which, lately, seemed light on flavor and not very exciting. I saw this recipe somewhere; frankly I was pretty ill and can’t even remember where I spied it.  Last weekend I just had to give it a try. It’s a humdinger of a spicy, flavorful brothy soup and just the ticket for whatever ails you or maybe you want to add a new flavor to your soup repertoire. It sure is not my usual chicken noodle!

This was one time I got adventurous with the Madras even though I am not a huge curry powder fan.  The spicy combination of hot peppers (I used a medium hot yellow hot one, an even milder green hot pepper and part of a sweet red pepper) and curry powder was great for opening my sinuses. The coconut milk pulls the flavors together to play nicely.  I used only one can of it but the original recipe used two. I could taste all the flavors, even stuffed up.   I loved every spoonful and felt better after imbibing!

I made my soup with some butternut squash which was already cooked and relaxing in my fridge. The original recipe used cooked cubes of red skinned yam, I plan on trying that version soon.  It also had fresh basil leaves shredded on top of each bowl; feel free to add some, There was no fresh basil around so my soup is without it.  I used some skinny rice noodles; the original recipe called for some weird sounding bean noodles.  I might use wider rice noodles in my next version or gf egg noodles.  You might use chicken breast if that is what is in the fridge or freezer. Add more chili garlic sauce if you love it hot; I went with the lesser amount; go as high as 2 tsp. if you dare!  I added the zucchini for more vegetable impact, add or subtract a vegetable of your choice….

That’s the one thing I want to stress in this post; you don’t have to have every single ingredient to make a soup recipe, its okay to make substitutions.  This is not baking, where you need to be more exact.  The only thing I ask is: don’t complain all over the place if you dislike the dish after you made huge changes to the ingredients.  I see that on foodnetwork.com and epicurious.com all the time and it makes me nuts.  No whiners!

So have fun and throw a different and spicy soup that will warm you totally up, it’s really not that spring like today and your body will thank you.

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Just after adding the zucchini slices.

 

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Ready to spoon out into the bowls.

Curry Noodle Soup Recipe

Ingredients

1-1/2 cups of cubed cooked butternut squash or yams
7-ounce rice noodles, skinny or wide

4 cups gluten free chicken stock (I like Kitchen Basics)
1 can full fat coconut milk
2 tablespoons curry powder
1 teaspoons chili garlic sauce
¾ pound boneless skinless chicken thighs, thinly sliced

1 small zucchini sliced into half rounds

1-2 red, yellow and/or green chilies, thinly sliced
4 green onions, thinly sliced
1 lime, cut into half

Directions

Roast a butternut squash which you have cut in half the long way and seeded.  I place the halves cut face down on a baking sheet sprayed with cooking spray, bake at 375 or 400 degrees until soft; 30-40 minutes, depends on the size and thickness.  Another option is 1-2 yams roasted and cubed.

Add the rice noodles to 1 ½ cups boiling hot water, turn off the heat and let stand ten minutes. Drain.

In a soup pot, combine the chicken stock, coconut milk, curry powder, and chili garlic sauce. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer. Add the sliced chicken thighs and cook for 10 minutes. Add the zucchini at the start of the last 4 minutes. You don’t want them overcooked, still a tad crisp. Add the squash or sweet potatoes and the soaked noodles and heat through. Add the chilies and green onions and squeeze in the lime juice.

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Serve the soup making sure you get some of the pepper chilies slices and green onions in each bowl.

Servings: four to six depending on bowl size.