One Stock, Three Different Soups

Dear Kaki,

It’s feeling *almost* like fall around here!  And so, it is plainly time for soup.  Plainly.

Except that this soup adventure was really because I had something like a gallon of stock after making Freezer Scrap Chicken Stock earlier this week, and not the freezer space to freeze it all.

I didn’t want to just trade a gallon-plus pot of stock for a gallon-plus pot of soup sitting in my fridge, so of course I decided, hey, I should make two different versions, just to have some variety!  And I instantly knew what I wanted to try: Alton Brown’s Chicken Noodle Soup, and some kind of homemade ramen noodle soup.

Then I got some leftover fajitas from some friends who had made a ton and were giving away leftovers.  So all of a sudden, I had the makings for three different soups.

And I made them all.  Simultaneously.  I know, I am a nut.  But I’m a nut with a fridge full of delicious soups, so, it works out.

This took quite a bit of prep to get ready, getting all the “mises en placed” as my friend Arielle would say (at which her sister Bethany would then do the most amazing facepalm).  But once the stove was up and going it all came together pretty quickly, because it’s essentially only five steps:

  1. Heat fat/oil in soup pot over medium heat.
  2. Add heartier veggies to the pot and stir.  Cook until onions are translucent.
  3. Add softer veggies and herbs/spices to the pot and stir.  Cook only a few minutes.
  4. Add stock and heat through.
  5. Season to taste.
Everything in place, ready to go!

Everything in place, ready to go!

Noodles, corn, black beans, tomatoes, salsa, and cilantro, all ready to dump in the pot at the right moment.

Noodles, corn, black beans, tomatoes, salsa, and cilantro, all ready to dump in the pot at the right moment.

Lime, parsley, the aromatics for each soup, adobo sauce, herbs, and three different stirring spoons at the ready.

Lime, parsley, the aromatics for each soup, adobo sauce, herbs, and three different stirring spoons at the ready.

And we’re ready!  Let’s make some Chicken Noodle Soup, Ramen with Kale Stems, and Fajita Lime Soup!

Chicken Noodle Soup (as inspired by Alton Brown’s Chicken Noodle Soup)

Ingredients:

  • 2 heaping teaspoons schmaltz*
  • half of a small/medium onion, diced
  • 1 cup celery, diced
  • 2-3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 carrots, sliced
  • 1 tablespoon parsley, fresh**, chopped
  • half a bag (4 oz.) of egg noodles, cooked
  • 6 cups of chicken stock
  • 1 tablespoon salt, or to taste
  • 6 grinds of black pepper, or to taste
  • 1/4 teaspoon soy sauce

*For these soups I used the schmaltz that I’d skimmed off of the stock, because it has really good chicken flavor.  You could of course use olive oil.  Or butter.

**I know, parsley is one of the cheapest herbs you can buy fresh, but I still hardly ever finish a bunch before it would go bad.  So I freeze fresh, chopped parsley (and any fresh herbs, really) in ice cube trays in the freezer.  Then, when a recipe calls for just a little bit of fresh parsley (or cilantro, or basil, or whatever else I’ve stocked in my freezer), I just take down a cube or two and we’re good to go!

Directions:

  1. Heat schmaltz in soup pot over medium heat.
  2. Add diced onion, diced celery, minced garlic, and sliced carrots to the pot and stir.  Cook until onions are translucent.
  3. Add parsley, cooked noodles, and stock.  (Remember to pour your stock slowly, in order to avoid any sediment that may have settled at the bottom of the container!)  Heat to simmering.
  4. Add salt, pepper, and soy sauce, all to taste (being careful with the soy sauce, it’s easy to pour too much!).  It’s ready!
Chicken Noodle Soup!

Chicken Noodle Soup!

Ramen with Kale Stems

Ingredients:

  • 2 heaping teaspoons schmaltz
  • half of a small/medium onion, diced
  • 2-3 cloves garlic, minced
  • kale stems*** from one bunch of kale, diced (about 1 1/2 cups) (optional)
  • 1 inch fresh ginger, minced
  • 4 cups stock
  • 1 teaspoon soy sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon sesame oil
  • dash or two of sriracha
  • one package (3.5 oz) ramen noodles, cooked (yes, from the plastic packaging, just prepared without the seasoning packet)
  • 2 teaspoons salt, or to taste
  • 6 grinds of black pepper, or to taste

***You know, from when you were prepping kale for some nice lunch salads?  Those kale stems?  Yup, no need to throw them away, you can dice them up for soups or stir-fries!

Directions:

  1. Heat schmaltz in soup pot over medium heat.
  2. Add diced onion, minced garlic, diced kale stems and minced ginger to the pot and stir.  Cook until onions are translucent, and the kale stems have lost a bit of their crunch, a little softer than you would want for, say, a stir-fry.
  3. Add stock, soy sauce, sesame oil, and sriracha to the pot, stirring briskly to incorporate the oil.  Heat to simmering.
  4. Add noodles and stir.
  5. Add salt and pepper to taste.  It’s ready!
Ramen with Kale Stems!

Ramen with Kale Stems!

Fajita Lime Soup (as inspired by Budget Bytes Chicken & Lime Soup)

Ingredients:

  • 2 heaping teaspoons schmaltz
  • half of a small/medium red onion, diced
  • 1 cup celery, diced
  • 2-3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/3 cup tomatoes, diced
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons salsa
  • 2 teaspoons adobo sauce****
  • 14 oz corn (fresh, canned, or frozen)
  • 1 cup black beans, cooked
  • 2 tablespoons cilantro, fresh, chopped
  • the juice of one lime
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 4 cups stock
  • diced fajita meat, cooked (maybe 1/2 to 3/4 cup, that’s just what I had on hand)
  • 2 teaspoons salt, or to taste
  • 6 grinds of black pepper, or to taste
  • shredded cheese to garnish, if desired

****Just like the herbs mentioned above, whenever I buy a can of chipotle chiles in adobo sauce I freeze whatever is leftover in ice cube trays in my freezer, so I can always just grab one or two to add to a dish.  Dice up the chiles before freezing so you don’t accidentally get a large frozen chile that then becomes a large, too-hot-to-remove-from-the-pot-and-dice chile.  Also, you can freeze some of the sauce in cubes by itself.  For this soup, I used two cubes that were just adobo sauce, without any of the chipotle chiles.

Directions:

  1. Heat schmaltz in soup pot over medium heat.
  2. Add diced red onion, diced celery, and minced garlic to the pot and stir.  Cook until onions are translucent.
  3. Add tomatoes, salsa, adobo sauce, corn, and black beans to the pot and stir.  Cook for a few minutes to heat through.
  4. Add cilantro, lime juice, cumin, oregano, chili powder, and garlic powder to the pot and stir.  Cook for a minute or two, until the spices and herbs are fragrant.
  5. Add stock to the pot, stir, and heat to a simmer.
  6. Add diced fajita meat and salt and pepper to taste.  Garnish with cheese if desired.  Eat with some quickly baked homemade tortilla chips!
Fajita Lime Soup!

Fajita Lime Soup!

Overall the fajita lime soup was the winner, with the ramen a close second.  The chicken noodle was good, but was still missing something?  Adding actual chicken meat would be something, but… I’m still going to play around with that one.  The other two, perfection!

Missing you, hope you’re well,

Caitlin

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s