Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Chicken Soup, Silver Palate style

soup is good food...
Just a quick blog entry to let you know that I am, in fact, alive :). Busy time of year for's time for one of my other hobbies to take center stage for a bit, singing and concert management for the Newton Community Chorus. Our Winter Concert is this of course, what happens this week ? I get an absolutely brutal cold, of course...damn plague carriers I live with !! I feel like my head and lungs are full of cold, wet oatmeal and I can hardly open my eyes. Definitely not C.O. material.

I know if there's any substance in this world that has a chance of getting me in shape to sing by Saturday, it's the chicken soup from the Silver Palate Good Times as exhausted as I am, I made a pot when I got home instead of giving in to the urge to snuggle with my pillows and blankie. I love chicken soups of all kinds, and I do all sorts of variations on simmering chicken frames for hours with a medley of delicious items. This soup is a little different - chock full of veggies (including lots of leeks...I have a serious leek obsession) and noodles for staying power...but it's made with boneless skinless chicken breast, and comes together in under an hour. I swear, you can feel yourself ingesting health and well being with every bite.

I am including the recipe here with my own very well tested modifications - I have made this more times than I can count, and it is nothing short of spectacular every time. Basically, I use more of the leek and more chicken than called for...change the proportions and timing a bit...and I go through less steps and use less dishes. Much as I love the SP, I usually see no need to use as many pots and pans as they call for...who has time to clean all that stuff ? I can hear my bed calling from here...

Chicken Soup, Silver Palate style

4 leeks, white and tender green parts only
water to cover leeks
2 T cider vinegar
2 sticks unsalted butter
3 carrots, peeled and chopped
3 stalks celery, chopped
2 t kosher salt
1 t fresh ground black pepper
2 1/2 quarts chicken stock
1 c white wine
2 lbs boneless skinless chicken breast (4 good sized pieces)
1 cup sliced mushrooms
2 cups fine egg noodles (uncooked)
4 oz fresh green beans, trimmed and cut into 1 inch lengths
3 T chopped Italian parsley

Cut the leeks in half lengthwise, and rinse well (leeks trap mud like crazy). Soak for 15 minutes in a bowl with water to cover, to which you have added the cider vinegar.

Once the leeks are soaking, start the chicken poaching in the stock and wine - bring to a boil, turn way down and barely simmer for about 15 minutes, or until just done. Remove the chicken when done to let it cool.

Chop the leeks, the carrot, and the celery. Melt the butter in a large stockpot, and gently saute the veggies for about 10 minutes, then season with the salt and pepper. Add the stock in which you poached the chicken, the mushrooms, and the green beans. Let simmer for 5 minutes, then add the egg noodles. Cook for another 5 - 10 minutes, or until the noodles and the veggies are done to your liking.

Shred the chicken and add to the pot with the parsley. Heat through, add salt and pepper if needed, and serve.

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