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Chicken Soup to Soothe the Soul

Beth Ribblett


Kerry woke up this morning with the cold that is being passed between our group of friends, so I decided to make her a little chicken soup soothe her head and her soul. The food situation at home gets a little dismal during the holiday since we basically live at the shop for the two weeks surrounding Christmas and New Years. After a quick trip to Rouses for organic carrots and celery and some Sanderson natural chicken legs, raiding the pantry, herb garden and frig, I scrounged up enough ingredients to make a pretty delicious soup!

Ingredients:

* 4 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
* 2 medium onions, chopped
* 3 medium carrots, cut into 1/4-inch rounds
* 3 celery ribs, chopped
* 4 cloves of garlic sliced thin
* big pinch of peperincino
* big pinch of dried oregano
* 3 sprigs of fresh thyme
* 1 Tablespoon of chopped fresh rosemary
* 4 chicken thighs on the bone, skin removed
* 2 chicken breasts, skin removed
* 2-1/2 quarts water
* 1 quart cold water, or as needed
* 2 Tablespoons "Better than Bouillon" organic chicken base (Wholefoods)
* fresh chives for garnish
* Salt and freshly ground black pepper
* egg noodles or grains, we used the "Seeds of Change" organic 7 grain blend

Preparation:
Heat 2 T. of the oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Brown the chicken thighs and breasts until almost cooked through.

Heat the other 2 T. of oil in a large soup pot over medium heat. First throw in the garlic and quickly heat until they sizzle. Add the onions, carrots, and celery and cook, stirring often, until softened, about 10 minutes. Throw in a pinch or peperincino, thyme, oregano and rosemary and stir to coat the veggies with the herbs.

Add the chicken pieces and the rest of the oil from the skillet and stir fry together with the veggies for a few minutes. Add the water and bring to a boil over high heat Reduce the heat to low. Simmer, uncovered, until the chicken is very tender and falling off the bone, about 2 hours.

Remove the chicken pieces from the pot and set aside until cool enough to handle. Then pull the meat from bone and put the chicken pieces back in the pot. Stir the meat back into the soup and season to taste with salt and pepper. Add noodles or grains, garnish with chives and serve hot.