Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Chicken Noodle Soup with Egg

I won’t pretend to be immune from the temptation.  Cans of soup line the grocery shelves, seducing me with the promise of a relatively healthy dinner that can be ready in the time it takes to turn on the stove.  I’m so close to shoving them into my basket when the little voice creeps into my head.  The little voice that says- how can you buy something premade when you know that you can make an even better version from scratch?  It’s a curse really.  I didn’t choose to be this way.  My life would be so much easier (and involve a lot less dish washing) if I could just buy frozen dinners.  But then I suppose my blog wouldn’t be very interesting.  So the cans go back on the shelf, and I head to the produce section.

Luckily, this soup only takes about 20 minutes to make before it gets in my belly so I avoid a complete hunger meltdown.  And as I chop the carrots and leeks, I am glad that I didn’t buy the premade concoction with mushy noodles and tasteless vegetables.  When I smell the soup simmering away, I am even more glad that I didn’t succumb to the watery broth fortified with excess sodium.  The complex and subtle flavors of the lemon and egg provide a perfect creamy backdrop for the healthy ingredients.  I can confidently promise that if you put down the can and make this recipe, you won’t be disappointed.  Even Addison loved it- and I could tell he was initially a bit skeptical about eating a meal that consisted solely of soup...although the cheesy bread I made with it probably helped convert him. 

Food Notes:
  • You can either roast your own chicken or buy a rotisserie chicken from the grocery store.
  • Feel free to substitute with other types of noodles- you may just need to adjust the cooking time
  • You can serve it with grilled cheese or cut a baguette in half and melt cheese on top (the latter is slightly healthier since you aren’t cooking it in excess butter)
  • You can either use homemade chicken stock or store bought (my favorite brand is Kitchen Basics) http://www.kitchenbasics.net/

serves 4
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8 ounces carrots, cut into small pieces
8 ounces leeks, thinly sliced
8 cups chicken stock
4 ounces cooked chicken, shredded
2 ounces vermicelli (angel hair)
2 eggs
juice of ½ lemon
freshly ground black pepper
kosher salt
chives (optional)

Put the carrots and leeks into a large pan with the stock, bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover the pan and simmer for 10 minutes.  Add the chicken and vermicelli to the pan and cook for 5 more minutes. 

Mix the eggs with the lemon juice and add ½ cup of the warm stock from the pan.  This tempers the egg and keeps it from turning into egg drop soup.  Mix it together well, and then add to the pan.  Reheat gently, stirring constantly, but do not allow the soup to boil.  Taste and adjust seasoning.  Garnish with chives and serve.

1 comment:

  1. I tried this recipe last week and it was a hit! More importantly, it was easy! Thanks!