Chicken Noodle Soup with Dill

Chicken Noodle Soup with LeeksMiracle Cure
It’s kinda blowing my mind that Thanksgiving is only two weeks away. My kids are still in the process of sorting and swapping their Halloween candy, for cryin’ out loud. And now I gotta think turkey? It’s time to hit the ground running and start planning—but I am in denial.

To add another layer of difficulty to the season, 3/5 of my household is sick. And, I don’t mean some coughing and a few sneezes. I mean full-on hacking cough, fever, multiple days home from school, sinus pressure…you gotta be kidding me sick.

As you can imagine, turkey is the last thing on our minds. We’re all about the soup.
I have been told that whatever this plague is, it is has been going around and a number of people I know are dropping like flies. We are just the latest casualties. And as such, we have been consuming a lot of chicken noodle soup.

What is it about chicken noodle soup that makes it the only food you want to consume when sick? Is it the heat? Is it the salty broth? Whatever the reason, chicken noodle soup is pretty much the only thing keeping us going. It is the miracle cure. Though, I will say I think I have had my fill. Thankfully, we seem to be turning a corner in the sick ward. The fact that I showered this morning is a major victory!

Since it is the holiday season, my one recommendation to you as you start your preparations is to make a big batch of this stuff and put it in the freezer. Making your own stock is key, which is why this is great. Making it ahead is essential so you will have it if you need it. And if you don’t, you have a quick and easy dinner when paired with a gooey grilled cheese.

Chicken Noodle Soup with Dill
Yields 4 servings

We definitely recommend making your own chicken stock, but if you really don’t have time, or are simply too sick, the next best thing is Kitchen Basics Soup Stock.

For the Chicken Stock
1 whole free-range chicken (discard giblets)
2 carrots, cut into large chunks
3 celery stalks, cut into large chunks
2 large white onions, quartered
1 head of garlic, cut in half
1 turnip, cut in half
1/4 bunch fresh thyme
2 bay leaves
1 teaspoon whole black peppercorns

For the Soup
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 medium onion, diced
3 garlic cloves, minced
2 medium carrots, cut into 1/2-inch-thick slices
2 celery ribs, cut into coins
4 fresh thyme sprigs
1 bay leaf
2 quarts chicken stock
8 ounces dried wide egg noodles, or noodles of your choice
1-1/2 cups shredded cooked chicken
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 handful fresh flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped
1 handful fresh dill, finely chopped

Make the Chicken Stock
Place the chicken and all the vegetables in a large stockpot over medium heat. Add enough cold water to just cover the chicken (about 3 quarts). Add the thyme, bay leaves, and peppercorns, and allow it to slowly come to a boil.

Lower the heat to medium-low and gently simmer for 1 to 1-1/2 hours, partially covered, until the chicken is done. As the chicken cooks, skim any impurities that rise to the surface. Add more water if necessary to keep the chicken covered while simmering.

Carefully remove the chicken from the pot and transfer to a colander to drain and cool. When its cool enough to handle, discard the skin and bones; hand-shred the meat into a storage container and reserve for the soup.

Carefully strain the stock through a fine sieve or a colander lined with two layers of cheesecloth into another pot to remove the vegetable solids.

If you plan to store the stock it will keep covered for about a week in the fridge, or freeze for longer storage.

Make the Chicken Noodle Soup with Dill
Place a soup pot over medium heat and coat with the oil. Add the onion, garlic, carrots, celery, thyme, and bay leaf. Cook and stir for about 6 minutes, until the vegetables are softened but not browned.

Pour in the chicken stock and bring the liquid to a boil. Add the noodles and simmer for 5 minutes until tender. Fold in the chicken, and continue to simmer for another couple of minutes to heat through. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Stir in fresh dill and parsley and serve.

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