Thursday, June 20, 2013

I Made a Chicken Soup So Good...

...I believe it could cure the chicken.


Makes you want to stick your face in it, doesn't it?

Update with recipe, by request: Nothing special here, folks. I wish I could say there was a mystery ingredient—pumpkin pieces bathed in shark urine, or something—but this is pretty plain old chicken soup, at least according to me, who doesn't really know how to make chicken soup. (Note: I was wrong, I DO have a mystery ingredient! Read on!)

1. Heat a couple tablespoons of olive oil in a pretty big pot on pretty high heat. (Note: I didn't actually use a tablespoon. Or any other kind of measuring device. Guestimations are part of the magic of cooking in Chez Little.)
2. Cut up three medium-sized onions. Because your arthritis is killing you, and you therefore can't properly hold an onion for cutting, use a large, heavy knife and simply chop each onion into a few big pieces. If you have a cleaver, use that—because waving a cleaver around makes you feel AWESOME. Take as much of the skin off the onions as you can or care to. 
3. When the oil is good and hot—just starting to smoke—add the onion. Stir with a wooden spoon to ensure all the pieces get that nice hot oil on them. 
4. Take three large carrots, hold them by their ends over the pot, and using quick, hard slicing motions, cut carrots into large pieces, with the result that the pieces fall into pot. Some of the pieces will fly around the room. That's okay. Just pick them up and put them in the pot. 
5. Fill tea kettle with water and turn on.
6. Repeat onion and carrot sequence with 3 or 4 large potatoes and one large zucchini, respectively. Add to pot and stir.
7. Open the cupboard that has cooking stuff in it and look in it, and see what wants to be in the soup. In this case, salt, pepper, dried basil leaf flakes, dried bay leaves, and Worstershire Sauce wanted to be in the soup. There may have been other stuff. Add them. Stir stir stir.
8. Open the fridge and see if there's anything in there that wants to be in the soup. Small pickled onions wanted to be in the soup. Just plop three or four in the pot, and add some of that nice pickled onion juice, too. Stir vigorously—no real reason, just wanted to say "stir vigorously." (Note: See item 15.)
9. Put cover on pot, turn the heat down a little, and let everybody in there get to know one another. A few minutes should suffice.
10. Do you like wine? Me too. Let's have some. I have a peppery and cinammon-puddingy Merlot. Very nice.
11. When the kettle water boils, slowly add it to the mix. Slowly because you want the water to catch up with the flavor, if you know what I mean. You're going to want a pretty lot of water, because this is going to be cooking for a good while.
12. When the water is boiling, add the partially eaten roasted chicken from last night's dinner. Bones and all. It's got stuffing in it? All the better. Push it down into the mix so it's covered with water and tightly surrounded by it's companions.
13. Let simmer for two or five hours, depending on how patient you are, because the smell of this sucker is going to drive you nuts.
14. Final step: use a fork and fish around in the soup for bones. Take your time, get as many as you can. You will not get them all, though, so be prepared to find bones as you eat this soup.  
Your soup is ready! Enjoy! 
15. Holy cow! I just remembered that I do have an awesome secret mystery ingredient! I totally forgot! I added a great dollop of South Coast Providores fig conserve—kind of a fig jam—around the same time I added the pickled onions! (Step 8.) That's what that special sweet figgy flavor was! 
Your soup is even more ready! Enjoy the heck out of it! And it's going to be even better tomorrow!
- This has been another episode of "I Made a Chicken Soup So Good..." You are welcome.