Louisa Enright's Blog

Mainely Tipping Points

A Chicken Soup Version

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Turkey Tracks: February 8, 2022

A Chicken Soup Version

Remember the chicken carcasses and bones I’ve been freezing?

I have two now, plus some chicken bones added in from other meals. It’s time to make chicken soup, so I defrosted the bones last night.

*Note that I cook by method, so just read the whole recipe, then if you must, create a list of what you need or would like.

Today dawned with icy slush and rain, so the trip I was going to make to get some chicken thighs to add to this soup will not happen—especially after my morning police call (to see if I’m ok) said ”Stay Home today.” And when I ventured out to the garage, I saw why: 2 inches of slushy ice rested on the driveway. It will freeze later, and…oh my.

So, I’ll make the soup from what I have here in the house. First, cover the bones with water, add some salt, bring everything to a bubbling hot, turn down to a simmer for at least 40 minutes. (You could also add savory veggies at this point, but I’m in a hurry as today is also cleaning/laundry day, and my veggie supply is limited. Note that after cooking you would discard these savory veggies.)

Yes, those are the giblets wrapped in paper—which I had to remove. But look at all the lovely fat coming out of the bones. Skim as needed.

Meanwhile, assemble the veggies you want to have in the soup. Here’s what I had on hand. I’m eating the rainbow today! The radicchio is going in as it needs to be eaten, and I thought its bitter taste would add some interest. I later added in some frozen corn too. I’m finding in winter I would rather have these organic frozen veggies than the tired veggies shipped in her from the other side of the world. I wish I had some celery though, especially with a chicken-based soup.

I will saute these in the duck fat I keep on hand. And I will use a big dollop, probably about 1/4 cup, as I do not want my veggies to burn in the pan. And based on a lot of research I believe clean animal fats are really good for you. (See Mary Enig and the Weston A. Price Foundation for more information.) Except for really good olive oil and coconut oil and red palm oil, I avoid the plant-based oils. I cut the greens off the 3 leeks before I took this picture. More on leeks down the page.

Leeks are in the allium family—along with all the onion and garlic vegetables. This family provides us rich sources of the sulfur that has been so depleted in soils. And sulfur is crucial to good health. Some cannot tolerate the allium family—if you can’t, you likely know that by now. (If you are interested in the sulfur issue, go to Stefanie Seneff’s web page for more info—she runs a research team out of MIT.)

Leeks can have some dirt in the end toward the upper green stem—so take a close at the inner layers of the stem so you can rinse out the dirt. Or, put the cut bits into a strainer and wash the dirt off there. Don’t be afraid of getting some dirt into the mix if you see some on the cut leeks in your pan. Remove and rinse the offending piece then. Actually, there are lots of goodies in dirt, and too many of us don’t get these critters anymore, which is why swimming in ”wild water” is a good idea. I cut mine in half and ruffle the green end to check for dirt. If the dirt isn’t gritty, which I don’t want, I don’t get too picky.

No dirt here:

AC is well aware of everything I do at all times.

With these veggies, I want to saute the veggies that need more cooking first (leeks, onion, garlic, carrots, cauliflower), and then add in the more tender veggies—in this case the cabbage, the yellow squash, the red pepper, and the radicchio. Frozen veggies go in last. Remember to cook down the veggies, without burning, until they start to turn golden and ”grunge” is forming in the pan. Then start adding in the more delicate veggies, turning and stirring until they, too, sweat out and melt down. Last, in a cooking whim, I added about 1 1/4 cups of short grain brown rice and turned it around in the hot veggies for a bit—just to give it some flavor too. Too much rice, and the mixture will become thick and lose its liquid—just add more water after all is cooked.

Here I added some ladles of broth to stop the cooking and to get all the good grunge loose in the pan. A big ladle like this one is a go-to tool in my kitchen.

I strained off my broth. Look at the beautiful color, even after only 40 minutes of simmering. And the trip to the garage was to put the kitchen garbage in the bins out there. Chicken bones will smell in a few hours.

I now clean my pot and put all the ingredients into it, including the frozen green beans and corn.

Bring the pot up to a simmer so the rice cooks—taste as you go along—it will take about 25 minutes to cook rice. Otherwise, simmer until the carrots are soft—that doesn’t take long. DON’T COOK TOO FAST OR TOO HOT. Taste to check on the herb and salt levels. If you wanted to use fresh herbs, here’s where you would add them.

When the rice is done, the soup is done. So, ladle up yourself a bowl and enjoy!

Tomorrow I’ll probably buy some boned chicken (I would prefer thighs) and add it to the soup. So I’ll just refrigerate the pot of soup when it cools. To this basic soup, you can also add a bit of cream. Or, an egg yolk beaten into a bit of some hot soup in your soup bowl to give a velvety smooth texture and lovely taste. Then add more soup. Added cheese is nice. Without the rice, putting hot soup over noodles is nice.

I could go on…

Written by louisaenright

February 8, 2022 at 1:36 pm

One Response

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  1. Yummy! Thanks for this! Stay safe and warm!

    Judith Brill

    February 8, 2022 at 2:02 pm


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