There’s just something about chicken soup that is just good for the soul…I’m referring to the real kind, with chicken bits and all…not the series of inspiration books. Chicken soup is like a hot water bottle on a cold wintry night – keeps you warm and happy. It can range from the most complex of recipes – with lots of browning, thickening, sieving to the simplest, and most often the healthiest versions. No prizes for guessing which kind of recipe I went for…
Cooking with a whole chicken no doubt produces the most flavourful broth and is most often the recommended way to go. I believe it’s the combination of meat juices, bones and skin that does the trick. It’s not quite the same when you try to get a good broth from chicken parts, and even worse – skinless breast meat – well, that just produces lame tasting water with a slight hint of chicken. Urgh!
Sometimes I make do with store-bought chicken stock – which works out well, especially for time-challenged people like me. When I felt like making some chicken and vegetable soup the other day, all I had in my fridge were skinless chicken breasts (horror!) So…chicken stock in a pack to the rescue.
I also have this particular liking for shredded chicken as opposed to diced or sliced chicken. In my little world, shredded chicken tastes better. Maybe it’s the texture thing, or it could be the whole rustic appearance to shredded meat that deceives my brain to thinking that it tastes yummier. Perfectly diced or sliced chicken is somehow associated with a factory-produced chunk of non-nutritional protein-wannabe. Okay, I’m biased but its my blog and I can write whatever I want to.
For this particular chicken soup, I pre-cooked my chicken and shredded it (yes!) and I used onions, carrots, cabbage and potatoes as my vegetable base. All natural ingredients. All good. All yum. It’s one of those ‘feel good’ soups with a natural, clean taste of chicken and fresh vegetables. Can’t go wrong with this one.