Classic chicken broth
Makes 8 servings
1 whole chicken (3 to 4 pounds), liver and giblets removed, or about 3 pounds from chicken breasts or thighs
Water or low-sodium chicken broth (see note)
Chicken fat, butter or oil
1 large or 2 medium onions, chopped
3 chopped celery sticks
4 carrots, peeled and sliced
4 medium red potatoes, chopped
1 28 ounces diced tomatoes
1 teaspoon dried thyme leaves
1 to 2 liters of chicken broth, as desired
Freshly ground black pepper to taste
Fresh chopped parsley for garnish
1. Put the chicken breast side up in the pot. Add water to cover the chicken by about an inch. Cover the pot with a lid and bring it to a gradual boil. Add about a teaspoon of salt. Reduce the heat and let it simmer gently for 20 to 30 minutes. Remove any film that forms on the surface. Turn off the heat and let the chicken sit in the hot liquid, covered, for an hour.
2. After an hour, remove the chicken to a cutting board. Skin and bone removal and disposal. minced or minced meat; Sit aside. If desired, for added flavor, simmer the broth an hour longer, either alone or with skin and bones. Strain mixture, discarded solids. Exfoliate the excess fat from the surface of the broth.
3. In a Dutch oven or soup pot, heat about 1 tablespoon chicken fat (skimmed fat from homemade broth), butter, or oil over medium-high heat. Add the onion, celery, and carrots, and cook, stirring occasionally, until slightly softened, about 5 minutes. Add potatoes, tomatoes, thyme, ¼ gallon of broth, and salt and pepper to taste. Bring to a simmer, reducing heat as needed to keep simmering, until vegetables are tender, about 30 minutes. Add chicken pieces at the end. If the soup is too thick, add more broth.
4. Taste the soup and add salt and pepper as needed. Mix any excess fat. Serve garnished with fresh parsley.
Note: To provide more chicken flavor, this recipe can start with store-bought or homemade broth instead of water. If you do, leave out the salt. Also, starting with the broth means that additional boiling of the bones is generally not necessary.
- Add 1 tablespoon minced garlic 30 seconds before adding the potatoes.
- Complement or replace thyme with herbs such as rosemary, basil, or dill. If using fresh herbs, add them 10 to 15 minutes before serving.
- Instead of canned tomatoes, stir in an equal amount of homemade or dried tomato sauce.
- Add a 15-ounce can, washed and drained, of pinto or other beans.
- Replace the potatoes with 14 cups of long-grain rice. Add more broth if the soup becomes too thick.
- Discard the potatoes and add 6 to 8 ounces of short pasta, such as penne or rutin, 10 to 15 minutes before serving.
- Stir in half a cup of pesto just before serving.
- Cover each serving with 2 tablespoons of freshly grated Parmesan cheese.
Recipe from Michael Hastings