Monday, November 28, 2016

Chicken Noodle Soup Revised

Struggling to make ends meet thru the last weeks before finals and Winter break? Just trying to stay warm? Limited time to cook...or no skills at all?  This recipe hits all of the cooking excuses, i.e. no money, no time, no skills to eat good food while being a college student or living on a fixed budget!


The 15 minutes you invest in making this ultimate comfort food will be the best thing you do this week to soothe your soul, warm your heart and calm your mind, and ensure you have another meal ahead. Better yet, you could share a bowl of this meal with someone else in need of company, a break, decent conversation, or a decent meal--seriously! 

My son couldn't believe how quickly I made the soup during his recent Thanksgiving break stating he didn't make soup, "because it took too long". Bah-Humbug! Excuses.


Chicken Noodle Soup Revised
(Adapted from Cooking Light Thanksgiving Edition 2016)

Equipment:
Large 5-quart saucepan 

Ingredients:
2 Tbls extra-virgin Olive oil
1 1/2 cups of yellow onion, chopped
1 1/3 cups of carrots, thinly sliced
1 cup celery, thinly sliced
4 cups chicken stock (homemade, store-bought, or bouillons)
1 1/2 cups of water
1 Tbls white MISO (optional, but this adds so much depth)
1/2 tsp black pepper
1/4 tsp kosher salt
1 (9oz) bag of frozen cheese tortellini 
8 oz of skinless, rotisserie chicken, shredded
2-3 green onions, thinly sliced (optional)




Instructions:
1. Wash your hands.
2. Prep all of your ingredients, i.e. stock, chicken, veggies as recommended. 
3. Heat 2 Tbls of oil in large saucepan over Medium heat.
4. Add onions, celery and carrots, and sauce x 8 minutes.



5. Add Miso, stock, water, and bring to a boil. 
6. Simmer for 5 minutes.



7. Add cheese tortellini x 3 minutes.
8. Add chicken



9. Serve up a mouth-watering, hunger-curing meal in a bowl. 



10. Share some with a friend.


Tips:

  • No Money:
    • roast your own chicken
    • make your own stock from carcass
    • use regular pasta, i.e. rotini, farfalle, shells, penne, elbow
    • omit the meat
    • reduce cost to potentially less than $1 per serving
    • have a lot of mouths to feed on a fixed budget, this will help
  • No Waste:
    • soups are great for using vegetables on the verge of spoiling, especially for making the stock
    • use the chicken carcass, even if you bought the rotisserie to make an incredible stock by covering it with water, adding quartered onion, smashed garlic, and 2-3 roughly chopped old carrots / celery sticks, wilting parsley or other herbs, and some salt and pepper, 
  • No Equipment:
    • only need a large pot 
    • a knife
  • No Skills:
    • most grocery stores have any kind of vegetable pre-sliced--if you have money, this will be a super-cinch of a meal
    • can you stir stuff in a big pot and adjust the heat? then you can make this meal.
    • can you chop a few vegetables? then you can make this meal
    • can you eat with your hands and pull chicken off of the bone? then you can make this meal
  • No Health:
    • cut back on Sodium by using low-sodium broth and omitting salt if you have trouble with blood pressure, retaining water, or heart / kidney disease
    • adds vegetables into your life
    • filling meal if trying to lose weight
    • great way to have meat as "a side" 
Nutrition Info:
Servings: 6 (1 1/2 cups) 
Calories 281 / Fat 10.3g / Protein 22g / Carb 26g / Sodium 637mg / Fiber 5g / Sugars 5g
Cost:  $1.54-$1.80 / serving