Slow Cooker Chicken Noodle Soup

I stumbled across this way of making chicken soup purely by acccident. You see, I can be quite lazy at times, and one day I got it in my head to just throw all of the soup making ingredients into the slow cooker instead of standing around monitoring a pot of simmering stock on the stove for 3 hours. And you know what? It worked. It more than worked - it was delicious! So much so, that it is the only way I'll make chicken soup/stock in our house any more and the greatest thing? Its SO easy!! You WILL need a slow cooker for this recipe - I did try to think of an alternative but I really don't think there is one in this case....


**As an aside, when plugging your slow cooker in, please please please make sure that the cord is free. It's pretty obvious but I didn't check mine a couple of weeks ago and ended up blowing up the whole unit :( You see the cord had become wedged between the ceramic cooking dish and the heating vessel and consequently overheated the cord, melted the plastic coating and, well, *ZAP* it went. Luckily I had a spare slow cooker as I use them so often, plus my mum also found one that she used in the 80's that she passed along - it's very retro but still does a great job! So please do check!**

What I love most about making chicken soup in the slow cooker is that there is no evaporation like that which occurs when cooking on a stove. All of the liquid that is put in at the start is STILL there at the end, resulting in a most instensely flavoured stock...so good!

To start, place everything you are using for your soup in the slow cooker. Our family saves all of the chicken bones from when we roast a chicken and uses these. If time is short, the bones can even be frozen for use another day. In this case, the 10yo had made honey soy chicken for dinner the night before, so in all of those leftovers went (from about 1.4kg of chicken portions). To the bones, add:

1 onion, cut into wedges (no need to peel)
1-2 carrots, cut into chunks (no need to peel)
2-3 sticks celery, cut into chunks
generous handful of herbs from the garden - thyme, sage, parsely stalks - no need to chop, just put them all in as they are, although the sage may be pounded/bruised if you are feeling like releasing some negative tension.
a couple of bay leaves
6-8 peppercorns


Cover the lot with warm water and place the lid on. I usually put it on around 9-10am and it is ready for our dinner at about 6:30-7:00pm. Heat on high for an hour or so to get things cranking then turn it down to low for the remainder of time.

The result? A beautifully rich and tasty stock that is a perfect base for soups, risottos and sauces. To make the chicken noodle soup, strain the liquid through a sieve positioned over a pot, catching the bones and mushy vegetables/herbs. Pick over the bones, removing any of the remaining chicken, breaking it into small pieces (it will be very tender) and set aside. Discard the bones and feed the mushy veggies to the chooks. Heat the stock on the stove until at a simmer. Add a couple of handfuls of your favourite soup pasta - eg. short cut angel hair, stars, alphabets etc and simmer until cooked. Kids love the alphabet pasta, always trying to spell their name in each spoonful!  To serve, stir through the shredded chicken, some freshly chopped parsely and a good grind of salt and pepper.

Enjoy with fresh crusty bread. Serves 4-6.

Comments

  1. Now that is easy. I don't have a slow cooker, nor room for one even if I did...but if I did I would make it!
    Actually it would be good for today as I've lost my cooking mojo- a whole day of very average cooking yesterday.

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  2. It's really easy! Ahh, a loss of mojo. I hope things are on the up for you, it's hard to be motivated while constantly cranking out nutritious, tasty meals for the family, trying to please everyone. Kitchen inspiration seems to go in waves, at least for me anyway... :)

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  3. Your right it does go in waves. Last night was fried eggs and salad, back to basics and then start again...hoping mojo will jump back on board sometime today.

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  4. Just wanted to stop back and say thanks so much for posting this recipe. I made it and it was delish! It was even more yummy for me knowing i grew the herbs this time rather than getting them from a packet.
    Hugs
    D

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  5. That's great, Deb! It's so satisfying using up herbs from the garden too, isn't it! Thanks for stopping by :)

    ReplyDelete

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Hi there, so nice of you to stop by! Thanks for sharing your thoughts, I love hearing what you are up to. Christine x

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