Saturday, February 2, 2013

Chicken & Noodles

This afternoon my friends and I met to discuss "The Personal History of Rachel DuPree" and eat. Unfortunately, this book was all about not eating so I had to be creative with the food served but I wanted to keep it Pioneer-like.  I decided on a simple meal of Chicken & Noodles. Chicken & Noodles is something I have most had experience with in Indiana. Traditionally, the noodles are made from scratch and the whole thing is served over mashed potatoes and sometimes a biscuit. That seemed a little excessive...On the second day the broth is all soaked up by the noodles so it becomes more of a casserole than soup.  I served this the first day* so it was more of a dumpling soup.  Still delicious--mashed potatoes weren't missed.

*Technically I made the soup the day before but I didn't add the noodles (which soak up the broth) until the next day so it was still soupy.

Chicken Soup

8 boneless skinless chicken thighs
1 box chicken stock (24 oz)
2 cans chicken broth
1 T herbs de Provence
1 t dried oregano
1/2 t turmeric
1 t salt
5 grinds black pepper
3 carrots, chopped or cut into coins
2 celery stalks cut into half moons
3 inner celery stalks with leaves chopped
1 batch dumpling noodles (recipe to follow)
1 1/2 C pasta water from making noodles

1. Place chicken pieces and all the spices in a large dutch oven and cover in stock--if chicken isn't all the way covered add some broth until it is covered.
2. Bring to a boil, cover, and reduce heat to medium. Simmer for 20 minutes or until chicken is cooked through. (this is called poaching chicken)
3. Meanwhile, chop the vegetables
4. When chicken is cooked, remove chicken from broth and set aside.  Add vegetables to the pot and cook 10-15 minutes on medium
5. When chicken is cool enough to touch, shred with your hands or two forks
6. Add chicken back in and add broth if you think broth is low.  Heat 5 minutes then remove from heat and let cool and refrigerate overnight (unless you are having it today, then just turn off the heat until the pasta is ready).

Dumpling Noodles from here
2 1/2 C flour
2 eggs
1/2 C milk
1 t salt
1 T butter, melted

1. In a large bowl combine flour and salt.  In a medium bowl combine eggs, milk and butter. Whisk until just combined.
2. Pour egg mixture into a well in the middle of the flour and stir until just combined
3. Turn  out on a floured surface and knead 5 minutes until smooth
4. Place dough back in the bowl and cover in plastic wrap. Let sit 15 minutes
5. Turn out the dough onto floured surface and roll as thin as you can go--aim for 1/4 inch. If it starts springing back step away for a few minutes and come back and try again.
6. Use a pie crimper or knife or something to cut into long strips
7. Place cut noodles on a cooling rack and let sit while you boil the water
8. Boil water in a large pan. When water is boiling add 1 t +  of salt. Cook noodles 5 minutes until they taste like pasta.
9. Reserve 1 1/2 C pasta water. Drain noodles
10. Add noodles to the soup along with reserved pasta water and heat soup until warm. Serve today as soup and Serve tomorrow over mashed potatoes...if you dare.

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