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The 1-Step Upgrade for Better Chicken Noodle Soup (An Italian Trick)

A smart tip for giving this classic soup more oomph.

<p>Simply Recipes / Sara Haas</p>

Simply Recipes / Sara Haas

Whether it is a seasonal cold or just the cold weather, it is hard to think of a dish more nourishing than chicken noodle soup. I've been making a lot of it these days.

Though starting with a rich, homemade chicken stock is an easy way to make my soup even more delicious, it takes time and effort. So, there's a simple step I take whenever I make chicken noodle soup—especially if I use store-bought stock or even when I use homemade stock: I purée some of the cooked vegetables and stock and add it back into the pot. This makes the soup so luxurious, almost creamy without adding any cream. It's a trick that doesn’t require any extra ingredients and takes just a few minutes.

This smart method for giving chicken noodle soup more oomph is inspired by pastina soup (AKA Italian penicillin soup), which sometimes blends the vegetables and broth until smooth before adding the pasta. Puréeing the base of the soup gives it so much more body and a gorgeous golden hue.

This is especially advantageous if you have a picky eater who doesn't like the texture of cooked vegetables. My kids love this upgrade to one of our family's favorite dishes.

Simply Recipes / Alison Bickel
Simply Recipes / Alison Bickel

Try This Tip at Home With Any Chicken Noodle Soup Recipe

Start by sweating the mirepoix—the chopped onions, carrots, and celery that make up the base of chicken noodle soup—with a little olive oil. Add the chicken stock and let them simmer covered for about 20 minutes or until the vegetables are tender.

Use a slotted spoon or ladle to scoop about half of the cooked veggies and some stock into a blender. Let the mixture cool for about five minutes—I use this time to add the chicken to the pot.

The key is not to add the chicken, noodles, or any hard herbs, like rosemary or thyme, until after you blend the vegetables. You don't want to purée any of these or you'll end up with a gloppy soup.

Carefully blend the vegetables until smooth, adding a little water or more stock to get the blade going. (Cover the blender with a kitchen towel to prevent any hot splatters.) Once blended, return the puréed mixture to the pot and finish making your soup following your recipe.

No blender? Use an immersion blender! Just be sure to move your pot off the heat, keep the blade fully submerged the whole time, and blend on low speed for just a few seconds because the vegetables are tender so it's easy to accidentally blend the whole pot. (This isn't necessarily a bad thing—just personal preference.)

You can use this trick for almost any soup. It works especially well with simple ones (think Tuscan white bean or chicken and rice) as well as creamy soups, like broccoli cheddar or creamy gnocchi. Just wait to add the pasta and protein until after you blend the base.

4 Ways To Make Chicken Stock

Read the original article on Simply Recipes.