Friday, July 6, 2012

This chicken soup will give you a lift--but let it take time

Sometimes we should take the time to make something from scratch; something that will chase away the chills of winter and lift your spirits. Here is the chicken soup I dreamt up and cooked today. It tastes divine--- a seriously cook-half-the-day-soup.
I brought 3 chicken carcases for $3 today. I washed them and put them in my favourite large pot. I poured a whole kettle of boiling water over the carcasses. Then I added some garlic; here I go again saying that it’s over to you about how much. I put the hard ends of a bunch of asparagus in too, saving the tender parts for later.
At this stage, I only put a little salt in, preferring to add it later when the other ingredients come together. I turned the soup down to the lowest setting, confident that I could go away and leave it for a couple of hours.
When I came back with an exhausted Perdy (yes—I made her run and chase her ball for 90 minutes). She sniffed at the delectable odours assaulting us as we entered the house.
I added some white pepper and some dried herbs and turned the heat up a little. After another hour of simmering away, the soup concentrated.
I strained it and put it back in the pot and placed some paper towels over the top and soaked up most of the scummy parts. Now the soup had taken on a light brown look. I added more chopped garlic and tasted--- OMG---subtle and savoury. Now for building the flavour even more.
In went the chopped reserved asparagus and some chilli flakes. I let it simmer for another 30 minutes. I chopped 2 potatoes into tiny bits and threw them in. I wanted them to break down and provide some body to the soup.
Now for some real healthy protein. I cut half a chicken breast (Skinned and deboned) into pieces and soaked it in lemon juice and soy sauce. I let that marinate for about 20 minutes and added that to the soup. The potatoes had broken down giving it a creamy texture without the added cream. It really was turning into a health nuts dream.
In went the chicken. I let that cook gently for ten minutes then tasted again. No more salt needed. It was exquisite. I will not be wasting any of this beautiful soup. Maybe I shall freeze some for another meal; then again, perhaps I shall invite my sister over share it--- after all, it’s gluten-free (even the soy sauce I used).
The cost? ----- NZ$16--- but it would serve about 8 people and it is so special. You wouldn’t want to eat a canned or packet soup ever again after sampling this one. It just needed time, love and patience.    coming soon!

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