Sunday, February 15, 2009

Heart and Soul.

These two photos are probably confusing you right now.
For starters, the first photo certainly doesn't look like the second. The second photo has (!) meat in it, too. What is going on here?

Making stock should be a basic part of any cook's repertoire. It is also extremely expensive to buy. I read somewhere about making stock from a rotisserie chicken--which I knew were sold at Bobby Chez (South, between Broad and 13th) on Sundays for $5. So for $5, I could have both the stock and the meat for a hearty chicken noodle soup.

The rest of the ingredients for stock I already had on hand, mostly because the ingredients for stock are things we would ordinarily throw away. The chicken carcass, onion skins, cheese rinds, unused portions of carrots and celery are really all you need.

I've started collecting stock items in the freezer. I cut the top off a 2 liter soda bottle and started saving onion skins, cheese rinds, root vegetables that were about to go bad...I'll be ready for stock any time.

Chicken Stock
Makes enough for one pot of soup.
Remember, this ingredient list is not absolute. This is just what I used.

1 rotisserie chicken carcass, with some meat/skin left on
2-3 quartered onions, with skins, bottoms and tops lobbed off
3-4 carrots, unpeeled, broken into 4-5 pieces
3-4 celery stalks, with leaves, broken into 4-5 pieces
3-4 cloves of garlic, cut in half
Bay leaf
1 tsp. rosemary
1 tsp. thyme
1/4 tsp. black pepper

1. Add all items to a 4 qt. pot. Cover with cool water. Bring to boil.
2. Reduce the heat to a slow simmer. Let the stock simmer from an 1.5-2 hours. It should reduce to 1 qt. of liquid.
3. Let the liquid cool a bit and then strain using a fine sieve into a container.
4. Refrigerate until ready for use. You can skim the fat once the broth is cool, too.

I'm very particular about my chicken noodle soup. I find the chicken in just about any canned soup too mushy and, dare I say, sketchy looking. That's why I was so excited to get roasted white-meat chicken in this soup, that I myself could pick over and control.

This soup, like stock, is also open to interpretation. I like a lot of vegetables in mine, so my soup probably had even more than listed.

Chicken Noodle Soup
Serves a lot of people.

Stock (recipe above) or 6 cups of your favorite
1 carrot, diced
1 onion, diced
1-2 celery stalks, diced
1-2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 Tb olive oil
Salt and pepper
3/4 box Alphabet noodles (I'm not sure what the proportions would be for another type of noodle...but these are really fun. Hard to drain, but really fun.)
Half the meat from a rotisserie chicken, or one breast, chopped into bite-size pieces

1. In your soup pot, saute the onion, garlic, carrot and celery in olive oil until softened. Season with salt and pepper.
2. Add the stock. Cook at a medium simmer until vegetables have softened, about 20-25 minutes.
3. Meanwhile, cook your pasta to 'al dente' according to package directions. To drain the alphabet noodles, use a fine sieve or a colander lined with a clean, cloth dishtowel.
4. Add the pasta and the chicken. Let simmer for 10 or so minutes, until the chicken is warmed through.

I added more thyme, rosemary, black pepper, and plenty of salt to this, too.

This soup goes great with the pretzel rolls and with the NY Times Bread I'll be showing you next.

1 comment:

Nina said...

when can I come and eat this?