This is an honest to goodness simple, classic, homestyle soup that has that extra little touch that brings it to over-the-top deliciousness. The smells instantly bring me back to Sunday dinners at my Grandma’s farm, and I can’t help but smile. A flood of memories come back and I’m a little girl opening every nook, cranny, cupboard and drawer to see what’s new as we descend on Grandma’s house. I’m wandering and exploring the farmland, chasing kittens, hunting for Easter Eggs, or not so patiently waiting for Santa to come- I love how the smells and taste of a dish can do that.
My grandma’s Sunday dinner repertoire consisted of classic, simple comfort foods. None of the meals were extremely complex, but made from scratch with love, and you could taste it. Some of my favorites I can remember were her chicken and dumplings, homemade mac and cheese, and of course this chicken noodle soup.
This soup is easy to make either on the stove top or in a crockpot, whichever way you choose after simmering together all day, the taste and texture is fantastic. And the homemade noodles thrown in right at the end, make the soup what it is. While you can certainly use store-bought egg noodles, I promise these are simple to make, difficult to mess up, and very much worth making!
Lets get to it, shall we?
I put all of the chopped veggies and broth into the crockpot. If you are cooking this on the stovetop, use a couple of tablespoons of butter or olive oil at the bottom of the pan first, and then sautee the veggies for a few minutes for a little extra depth of flavor. Then add your chicken, broth, water, salt and pepper and let time do it’s magic. Cover and let simmer on low for several hours stovetop, or set your crockpot for 8ish hours on low, 4-6 hours on high.
Now that you’ve got your soup going, its time for the noodles. Don’t be intimidated, every time I make these I get nervous that they won’t turn out right, and every time they are amazing. I think its the lack of specifics of the recipe that make my head spin. When I first asked my grandma for the recipe, I couldn’t believe her response. Egg noodles are really just egg, water and flour. But the measurements she gave me were for 1 egg, half an eggshell of water, and enough flour so that it comes together. Really?! But which half of the eggshell do you use?? The big or small half?? What about flour?? But deep breath and relax, because it really will all come together. I briefly use my fork to break up the egg and mix in the water, and then start adding the flour. I’d start with about a half cup of flour, and slowly add more until a ball of dough forms. Then you can turn the dough onto a floured surface and knead a few times until the dough is no longer sticky, adding flour as needed. I’d say I usually end up using about a cup.
Then you get to start rolling. I’d love to get a real pasta roller, but this works also. Just roll, and turn the dough over every few strokes, to make sure it doesn’t stick. Add some extra flour as needed, and keep rolling until the dough is paper thin. You may have a few rips and tears, and it certainly wont be a pretty perfect square, but that’s OK! Remember this is a rustic, homemade soup- it will look and taste delicious in the end!
At this point I cover the dough with a clean dry towel, and walk away until a few minutes before we’re ready to eat. When that time comes, it’s time to cute the dough into strips.
I use my pizza cutter to cut the noodles into roughly 1/4 inch strips. They are not perfectly uniform, some will be long, some will be short, but I use them all- little broken chunks included- because trust me, you won’t want to waste any!
Time for them to jump in! Test your soups seasonings, and add more salt if needed. Also, take your chicken breasts or any large chunks of meat out now and shred with two forks. Add them back to the soup, and toss your noodles in. Fresh noodles won’t take long to cook, just a few minutes on the stovetop, and maybe 10 or so in the crockpot. They are ready when they are no longer a deep yellow shade, and more of an opaque white in color.
And that’s it! The egg noodles soak up some of the liquid and the soup thickens a bit with the flour from the noodles. This is a hearty, chunky soup that is filling and satisfying.
Enjoy- something about chicken soup really is good for the soul!
2-3 Boneless, skinless chicken breasts (can also substitute a deli rotisserie Chicken, picked and shredded)
2 cups carrots, peeled and chopped
1 yellow onion, diced
6 stalks of celery, chopped
6 cups chicken broth
1-2 C water
Salt and pepper to taste (1/2 – 1 tsp Salt, and probably about 1/4 tsp Pepper)
For the noodles
1/2 eggshell of water (approx. 2 T)
Flour (approx. 3/4-1 cup), plus more for rolling out dough