a big hug

February 24th, 2011

First day back home – it still feels surreal to me that we are back to our normal lives. We had planned, since it was a vacation week, to do a couple of fun things with Noah and I was determined to get at least one of them in before the week was up. So we took him to the local nature center where I got to watch him pet a hedgehog and chat with some turkeys and sheep.

When we came home for lunch I opened my freezer and found this, which always makes me happy:

Having chicken soup in the freezer makes me feel competent, motherly and loved all at once. And I needed to feel those things today. Sitting at my kitchen table to a nice hot bowl of homemade soup was like getting a big hug.

Full disclosure: this is not a make-your-own-stock-from-scratch kind of recipe. It uses canned stock and there’s minimal fussing – which in my opinion is a good thing, as it makes it that much easier and quicker to get from this:

 to this:

 

 

almost any time you like………..which was especially nice after a morning of this:

Chicken Noodle Soup
adapted from Bon Appetit

3 large cans (16 c.) low-sodium chicken broth
1 3 1/2-4 lb chicken, cut up
1 onion, chopped
2 carrots, peeled and sliced
2 stalks of celery, sliced
8 oz. dried wide egg noodles
1/2 c. finely chopped Italian parsley

In a large pot combine broth and chicken. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and partially cover – simmer for 20 minutes, or till chicken is cooked. Remove chicken and transfer to a large bowl – when cool enough to handle, remove meat and discard bones and skin. Tear meat into bite-size pieces; reserve.
Bring broth to a simmer. Add onion, carrots and celery and simmer for 8 minutes. Add noodles, parsley and reserved chicken. Simmer for 5 minutes – season with salt and pepper to taste.

Notes:
1. If you are planning to freeze the soup do not cook the noodles. Add them at the end; this will prevent them from becoming mushy when you reheat your soup.
2. If you can, try to make this the day before serving. Put it in the refrigerator overnight – when you take it out you’ll find the fat has risen to the surface and solidified. This makes it really easy to remove, versus constantly skimming as you cook.

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