Local Flavor: Wintery Chicken Soup

By Tom Brooks, Director of Food & Beverage, The Essex Resort & Spa

As I write this, it’s a typical cold, wintery night in Vermont—and it’s got me thinking about a refined and sublime experience: There’s nothing quite like a deliciously satisfying (and hot) dinner while the snow is swirling outside.

One of my favorites is a steaming, piping hot chicken broth that’s clear as ice and teaming with homemade noodles, plus chicken, celery, and carrots. All you need is some crunchy Italian bread and a CD of your favorite Farucca music, and you have the ingredients for a warm, soothing night in.

Enjoy!

Classic Chicken Soup
4 quarts water
2 bone-in, skin-on chicken breasts
2 large carrots
3 long celery stalks, peeled
2 Bay leaves
1 lb. fresh dried (or frozen) noodles

Fresh Pasta
8 eggs
5 cups flour

Bring the water to a boil. Clean chicken breast under cold water, making sure to clean off all blood spots.  Put chicken into pot of boiling water, and then simmer for 2 to 3 hours, depending on the size of the breasts.  Cut peeled celery and carrots into large battonette (a little larger than a julienne cut).  Bring the water back to a boil. Take breasts out of broth and separate the meat from the bone. Discard the skin.

To make the pasta, combine the eggs and flour well-style until the dough is smooth to the touch.  Cut into flattened pieces and roll through the pasta machine on the thinnest setting, making wide noodles or thin spaghetti noodles. Cook in salted boiling water until al dente. In the other pot, bring the vegetables, chicken and chicken broth to a simmer.  When vegetables are at the desired tenderness, add noodles and serve piping hot with any favorite chopped herb. And don’t forget the crusty bread!

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