Monday, 21 November 2016

"Chicken Soup" Pasta

Everybody loves chicken soup, but sometimes it's just not enough to be a meal. This on the other hand, is plenty. (Maybe too much - I have to say I'm calling for the same amount of pasta for 2 servings that I've always called for, but the reality is that we are now eating half that amount, and half that amount is what I put into this. I've always operated on the assumption that if I say a pasta dish makes "2 servings" that you are going to adjust the quantity of pasta called for to the amount you actually eat, rather than cook what I say, and have too much/not enough*.)

Anyhoo. It's quick, it's simple, it's pasta with the flavours of chicken soup. Sounds like a plan. Of course, if there are other seasonings that are your idea of what it takes to make chicken soup be chicken soup, then those are the seasonings you should use.  I used orecchiette, because they were there, but I can certainly see egg noodles being a good choice for this dish.

You could make this with raw chicken, which is what I did, in which case like me you are likely to need to use vegetable oil to cook the chicken and veggies, or you can use leftover cooked chicken, in which case you may also have some chicken fat. If you've got it, you should definitely use it - it will do nothing but good things for the flavour.

2 to 4 servings
30 minutes prep time

Pasta with the Flavours of Chicken Soup

225 to 250 grams stubby pasta

1 or 2 stalks of celery
1 large carrot
1 large leek
225 grams (1/2 pound) mushrooms
300 grams (10 ounces) skinless, boneless chicken, raw or cooked
2 tablespoons chicken fat or mild vegetable oil
salt & freshly ground black pepper to taste
1 teaspoon sweet Hungarian paprika
1 teaspoon rubbed savory
2 tablespoons flour
1 1/2 cups chicken stock
generous chopped parsley to garnish

Wash, trim, and chop the celery. Peel and coarsely grate the carrot.

Put a pot of salted water on to boil for the pasta. Put the fat or oil in a large skillet and heat it over medium-high heat. Add the celery and cook for a few minutes, stirring occasionally, then add the carrots and continue cooking and stirring.

Meanwhile, clean, trim, and coarsely chop the mushroom. Clean the leek, trim off the tough dark green parts and root, then cut it through lengthwise. Cut in slices of about 1 cm. Chop the chicken into bite sized pieces.

When the water comes to a boil, add the pasta and cook for the time suggested on the package, stirring occasionally (I am assuming 10 to 12 minutes) and add the leeks, mushrooms, and the chicken - if it is raw - to the pan. Continue to cook and stir for about 5 or 6 minutes. If the chicken is already cooked, it should be added at the end of this 5 or 6 minutes of cooking.

Season the pan of chicken and vegetables with the seasonings, then sprinkle over the flour. Mix in until it is well absorbed with no signs of whiteness left. Mix in the chicken stock, and continue simmering until the pasta is ready to be drained. This is a good time to get the parsley washed, trimmed, and chopped.

Drain the pasta and add it to the pan of sauce. Mix well, and serve.

*Now I tell you.
Last year at this time I made Cornmeal Waffles.


MMeadows said...

Sometimes when I make chicken soup with simillar ingredients I dump a disproportionate amount of pasta in there, then to recover, I make it into a pasta dish that tastes really good with pasta cooked in real nice chicken stock, may taste very similar. Need to work on my presentation skills though.

Ferdzy said...

Oh yes, and then it's a one-pot meal too. I guess I cooked mine separately to make sure the pasta was done just right, but if you can manage it one pot so much the better. And I have to say, just a little chopped parsley makes a lot of things look much spiffier than the effort expended would suggest.