Chicken Noodle Soup
Chicken goodness in a white wine broth infused with thyme and classic aromatics.
6 boneless, skinless chicken thighs (or breasts if you prefer)
1 Tablespoon olive oil
Salt and pepper
1/3 cup diced carrot (1/4 inch dice)
1/3 cup diced celery (1/4 inch dice)
2/3 cup diced onion (1/4 inch dice)
1 cup dry white wine or dry French vermouth (such as Noilly Prat)
1 1/2 quarts chicken stock or broth (unsalted, low sodium or lightly salted)
3/4 teaspoon dried thyme
2 bay leaves
1/2 pound cut pasta cooked in salted water
Notes on noodles:
Use a smallish cut pasta such as Fusilli that can easily fit on your spoon. We use whole-wheat pasta to make this a wonderfully satisfying, healthy meal-in-a-dish.
Cook the pasta ahead to al dente in well-salted water, then add it to the soup just before serving so that it doesn't overcook. Adding a few drops of olive oil to the pasta water will help prevent it sticking together after cooking.
1. Dice the chicken thighs into pieces about 3/4-inch or less in diameter. Season generously with salt and pepper.
2. Heat the olive oil in a pot over high heat. When hot (shimmering but not yet smoking), add the chicken and allow it to brown on all sides, tossing it around with a wooden spatula as needed to keep it from burning. This should take about 5 minutes or so, depending on the heat of your stove.
3. Turn the heat down slightly to medium-high and add the carrots and celery to the pot. Allow them to soften slightly with the chicken for about 3 minutes.
4. Add the onions to the pot and allow them to cook alongside the other ingredients for about 3 minutes. During this time, you should notice browned bits accumulating on the bottom of the pot. If these browned bits begin to burn, turn the heat down a bit.
5. Add the wine to the pot and turn the heat to high. Deglaze the pan with the wine by scraping up the browned bits with a wooden spatula as the liquid boils and reduces in volume by about half.
6. Stir in the chicken stock or broth, the thyme and the bay leaf and bring the soup back to a boil. Turn the heat to medium-low and put the lid askew. Allow the soup to simmer gently for about 15 minutes.
7. Taste the soup and adjust the seasonings as needed. Add pasta just before serving.