Winter has its perks, among which are soups. The warm feeling of delight as it travels your inward parts is deliciously heartwarming—literally. If there is one meal to enjoy during the cold it is Chili’s and Soups.
• 1 (3 1/2-pound) whole chicken
• 3 quart(s) low-sodium chicken broth
• 6 carrots, peeled
• 4 stalk(s) celery, ends trimmed
• 3 medium onions, peeled
• 5 black peppercorns
• 1 clove(s) garlic, crushed
• 10 sprig(s) parsley
• 2 sprig(s) thyme
• 1 bay leaf
• 2 tablespoon(s) unsalted butter
• 4 leeks, tops and root ends removed
• 1 teaspoon(s) salt
• 1 teaspoon(s) fresh-ground pepper
• 3 cup(s) (5 ounces) medium egg noodles
Make the stock: Place the chicken and chicken broth in a large stockpot and set it over medium heat. Roughly chop 2 carrots, 2 celery ribs, and 1 onion and add to the broth. Add the peppercorns, garlic, 2 sprigs of parsley, thyme, bay leaf, and enough water to just cover the chicken. Bring the broth to a boil, reduce heat to a simmer, and cook until the chicken is very tender — about 1 1/4 hours — skimming the surface periodically. Remove the chicken and place in a large bowl. Strain the broth through a very fine sieve into a large, clean bowl or stockpot. Discard the vegetables.
Make the soup: Skim any fat off the top of the strained broth and discard. Slice the remaining carrots, celery, onions, and leeks into 1/4-inch-thick pieces and set aside. Remove and discard the skin and bones from the chicken, cut meat into 1/2-inch pieces, and set aside. Chop the remaining parsley leaves and set aside. Melt the butter in a large Dutch oven over medium heat. Add the vegetables and cook until the onions are translucent — about 7 minutes. Add the chicken, the reserved broth, salt, and pepper. Simmer the soup until the vegetables are tender — about 1 hour. Stir in the egg noodles and parsley and cook until the noodles are tender — about 10 more minutes. Serve hot.
Add toasted bread or tortilla for an added treat :).