Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Chicken Noodle Soup with Homemade Noodles

I'm sorry, darlings.

I know I promised new recipes a few days ago, but life got away from me...

Having two kids under 2 does happen to take up quite a bit of your time.

My sweet babies have caught a summer cold. Our poor Divine Cupcake was the first to come down with it, and lets just say, there has been a lot of this face in our house lately:
I decided to bring back an old classic.

I have many wonderful memories associated with homemade chicken noodle soup. We were the lucky kids on our block who had a mom that was home full time. While my dad was generally the main "chef" of the house, he enjoyed more experimental cuisine being a foodie...when my mom cooked, it was generally the wonderful meat and potatoes fare that many people grew up with. For us, because it was a rare occurrence, it was ALWAYS special.

We always welcomed walking in from school at 3:00 after our bus ride and smelling the delicious combination of chicken, veggies and homemade breadsticks. We knew dinner would be early that night and delicious. Mom always made enough for any stragglers passing by (aka the neighborhood kids who had to wait patiently for their moms to get home) to come in and enjoy a bowl with us if they wanted to.

I think that is one thing that molded me. My home was a safe haven and the whole neighborhood knew it. All the neighborhood kids loved and respected my mother. I was and still am blessed by her wonderful example.

My favorite days were the days she was a little late finishing up and we got to help her make the noodles.

I've been making this dish since I was about 5 years old and I will make it until I'm in my grave because its THAT good and reminds me of wonderful times past.

Here you go, darlings. Enjoy the nostalgia!

(Note- I made my in the crock pot, but its just as easily done in a stock pot and quicker. I just knew that my little ones wouldn't wait for me for long and when you do it in a stock pot, you kind of have to do everything all at once.)

2 large boneless skinless chicken breasts (you can use bone in, just be sure to remove the skin and be careful to make sure to get ALL the bones out.)
3 celery stalks, diced finely (dice the leaves and add them in too. My grandma always said that celery leaves helped cure colds fast. Its probably an old wives tale, but they are delish too!)
2 carrots, diced finely
1-2 cups any other veggies you'd like (I used about 1/2 c of peas and 1/2 c of corn)
1 recipe homemade noodles
onion powder, salt, pepper to taste

In a large stock pot or crock pot, place your carrots, celery and chicken with 3 cups of water. Sprinkle the top with onion powder (and garlic powder if you want), and salt generously (this will make your stock, and you will be adding more water later so if its too salty, you can always diffuse it.) sprinkle lightly with pepper. (I did add some dried minced onion to mine as well)  If using a crock pot, place on low for about 4-6 hours, if using a stock pot, bring to a simmer and simmer on low until chicken is soft, cooked through, and easy to shred (usually takes 45 minutes to 2 hours depending on how hot your surface coils get and how quickly you want it to be done.  : ) )

Once your chicken is just about ready to shred, start your noodles.

2 eggs
2 cups flour
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 to 1/2 c water

Put the flour in a bowl and make a well in the middle. Put the eggs in the middle of the well, and sprinkle the salt on top.

 (take your rings off for this part ladies...) Add a splash of water. Using your hands, slowly mix all the ingredients together. Add enough water so that the dough is pliable and somewhat sticky (almost like play dough but slightly stickier).  It should look something like this when its ready to be rolled out:

Split the dough into thirds. Take one of your thirds and roll it in flour. Then roll it out as thin as you can (*note* if you're using a crock pot, you want to make the noodles slightly thicker, as they will melt down instead of cook through)

Once its rolled out, roll the dough up like you're making cinnamon rolls. Using a sharp nice, slice your roll into 1/4 to 1/2 inch rolls. Unroll them and voila! You have your noodles.

I wanted my noodles to be shorter so I didn't have to cut them up for my babies. I cut my rolled out dough in half and repeated the process with the other half. My noodles ended up being, at the longest, about 4 inches in length.

If you have a hard time unrolling the spirals (the ends have sealed) simply pop the center out and unroll them from there. You will easily find the sealed end and get it apart.

Toss the noodles lightly into your bowl as you unroll them. No need to pack them in.
Once you've shredded your chicken, go ahead and add your extra veggies and about 2-3 more cups of water . Taste to be sure you don't need to add more seasonings, or more water. If using a stock pot, bring to a rolling simmer, if cooking in a crock pot, adjust to high heat and let simmer for about 20-30 minutes.Toss in your noodles and lightly stir to break them up. If you're cooking in a stock pot, it will take about 10 minutes for the noodles to cook through, if you're cooking in a crock pot, watch them and taste. Depending on how hot your slow cooker cooks, it can take anywhere from 10-20 minutes. You don't want to let it go too long in the crock pot, or the noodles will turn to mush.

and there you have it...have some breadsticks on the side and you have a hearty meal guaranteed to knock out any cold...:)

Bon appetit, darlings!

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