I’m Still Here…Chicken Soup & All!


Friday January 13th…..where has the time gone?!  The last time I wrote you was Oct 3rd and I was determined to post weekly.  Little did I know that every minute I could spare after work I would soak up with Bella!  She’s not your average little girl (ok, so I’m biased)…she is happy and sweet and an excellent sleeper!  When I pick her up from daycare, I get at least 4 hours with her as she doesn’t “go to bed” until 10…and lucky for me, sleeps until we get her up in the morning!  Sure, there may be a wimper here or there but quickly, she is back to sleep.  Oh…God is good! 

While I SO loving being a Mom to Bella…I’ve still been cookin’ and thinkin’ about Indulge.  Wednesday was a particularly “Indulgeful” day.  First, my friend Katie mentioned the Turkey Burgers that I featured in my first year of Indulge.  Later, I received a comment on my Red Wine Spritzers (Check it out. Lauren, I may not know you…but your comment cracked me up.).  And finally, WordPress sent my blog 2011 recap.  To my surprise, the day/post with the greatest number of “hits” was my last one…”Bittersweet Beginnings” on Oct 3rd.  What are the odds?  On the day of my last post…so many of you were there to check in.  Thank you for reading!  So…with all those little nudges…I knew it was time to get back to you.  Thank you for your patience!

As for good news…since Oct, I have worked out several recipes and I have many to share in the coming posts.  The first one I want you to try is courtesy of Tyler Florence.  Have I ever told you how much I love that man?!  Seriously.  The.Guy.Can.Cook.  My friend Mandy and I have been following him for years but over the last 3.5 months…as Bella and I have suffered through “building our immune systems” (aka daycare cooties), Tyler’s Chicken Noodle Soup has been a staple.  This soup will take you allll the way back to your Grandma’s kitchen…REAL chicken noodle soup.  Please give it a try…and don’t leave out the turnips!  (To my surprise, Iowa friends…you can get turnips at your local HyVee or Fareway….who knew?!)

Chicken Noodle Soup

Recipe Courtesy of Tyler Florence

6-8 Servings

  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 medium carrots, cut diagonally into 1/2-inch-thick slices
  • 2 celery ribs, halved lengthwise, and cut into 1/2-inch-thick slices
  • 4 fresh thyme sprigs
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 quarts chicken stock, recipe follows
  • 8 ounces dried wide egg noodles (I used frozen egg noodles – 16oz Reames”
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded cooked chicken
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 handful fresh flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped

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. Sprinkle with chopped parsley before serving.

Chicken Stock:

  • 1 whole free-range chicken (about 3 1/2 pounds), rinsed, giblets discarded
  • 2 carrots, cut in large chunks
  • 3 celery stalks, cut in large chunks
  • 2 large white onions, quartered
  • 1 head of garlic, halved
  • 1 turnip, halved (I used two!)
  • 1/4 bunch fresh thyme
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 teaspoon whole black peppercorns

Place the chicken and vegetables in a large stockpot over medium heat. Pour in only enough cold water to cover (about 3 quarts); too much will make the broth taste weak. Toss in 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 it cooks, skim any impurities that rise to the surface; add a little more water if necessary to keep the chicken covered while simmering.

Carefully remove the chicken to a cutting board. When its cool enough to handle, discard the skin and bones; hand-shred the meat into a storage container.

Carefully strain the stock through a fine sieve into another pot to remove the vegetable solids. Use the stock immediately or if you plan on storing it, place the pot in a sink full of ice water and stir to cool down the stock. Cover and refrigerate for up to one week or freeze.

Serve immediately while the soup is hot!  I promise…it will hit the spot.  

Cozy up this weekend with a big bowl of soup, your favorite blanket, and your favorite couch buddy.  Winter has hit Iowa…and it is CHILLY out there!  🙂

Indulge.  In Life.  In Love.  In Food.

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