Whether or not you are sick, nothing beats a nice, hot bowl of homemade chicken soup. It’s been chilly in Indiana for the past few days and my daughter has been a little under the weather, so today was a perfect day to make some. There is no actual recipe for the deliciousness I made today but there IS a wrong way to make chicken soup and that’s not putting enough stuff in it.
This was a good opportunity to use up some of the vegetables that needed to be eaten sooner rather than later, too. My only lament is that I did not have any croquettes stored in the freezer, not to mention, I am out of cracker meal (and crackers!). Making a fresh batch was out of the question. Ask anyone back home, and they’d tell you that it’s almost mandatory to have a couple alongside your soup for a hearty, savory meal that is easy on your stomach.
I also didn’t have the right fideos (noodles) which you can buy here so I improvised by making a small batch of thin spaghetti, broken up into fourths. You will want to make the noodles separate from the soup and add them to your bowl after serving, otherwise they will just swell up in your soup pot and make your soup starchy and not so pleasant to eat.
Regardless of the missing minor details, this was my best pot of soup yet. As a matter of preference, I did not use any potatoes because I simply hate soggy, mushy potato chunks in a soup or stew, but I did have yuca and malanga to provide the starchy tuber goodness. You can add a diced potato if you want to; it will not detract from the flavor – I’m just excluding it from my recipe. I’d love to hear what you put in your chicken soup – let me know in the comments below.
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- 2 large chicken thighs, bone in, skin on
- 2 cubes of chicken bouillon
- 1/2 large onion, sliced thin
- 1/2 of a red (or green) pepper, not sliced
- 1 yuca, peeled and cut into large chunks
- 1 malanga, peeled and diced
- 3 carrots, peeled and cut into large chunks
- 3 cloves of garlic, smashed
- 2 bay leaves
- salt and pepper
- 1 cup dry vermicelli or thin spaghetti, broken into fourths and cooked until al dente.
- 4-6 lime wedges
- Fill a large pot with water and put in chicken, onion, garlic, red pepper(or green), bay leaves and bouillon.
- Bring to a boil over high heat.
- Reduce heat to medium and cover. Cook for 30 minutes.
- Remove lid and add carrots, yuca, malanga (see notes about substitutions). At this point you want to taste your broth and add salt and black pepper as desired.
- Bring the heat back up to medium-high and cover. Cook an additional 25 minutes.
- Start cooking noodles in a separate pot until desired tenderness - al dente recommended because the heat of the soup will soften them further.
- Remove the chicken from the pot and remove/discard the skin. Remove all the meat from the bone with a fork and knife or two forks and shred into pieces.
- Return to the stock pot and stir together.
- Ladle soup into bowls, add noodles and squeeze a lime wedge into the bowl.
- Serve and enjoy.
- Note 1: Malanga may be hard to find, but you may be able to find yuca in your grocery store's freezer section if they carry Goya products. Turnips, potatoes, yams and parsnips may be substituted without affecting the overall flavor of the soup.
- Note 2: Cooking the noodles separately prevents the pasta starch from thickening the soup.