There is nothing like warm chicken noodle soup on a cold evening or when your not feeling well. There is just something about it that makes you feel better. Chicken noodle soup out of a can isn’t bad. Especially when I am the one who is sick and sure don’t feel like making homemade but if you make enough and freeze it you can keep the canned soup on the shelf at the store.
One of the beauty’s of chicken noodle soup is that its not science. Do you love carrots? Add more. Hate celery? Don’t add it at all. Do you like thick or thin noodles? Any noodle will do. You don’t even have to have chicken and call it noodle soup. Make it your own and to your family’s liking.
I have tried many different recipes over the years and made them my own. Recently I came up with a great idea to combine two of my favorite ones to make the ultimate chicken noodle soup.
This recipe makes 12-15 bowls of soup.
1 little whole chicken (wash and take out insides, or buy one without insides)
Soup base (picture below)
2 branches of celery
2 garlic cloves
2 – 32oz containers of chicken broth
2 – 12 oz. bags of noodles or homemade noodles
1 bunch of escarole, washed
Place chicken in 24 cups of water and bring to a boil. Turn to low and simmer for 45 min to 1 hour. Take chicken out of water and allow to cool. Skim the fat pieces out of the broth. I use a small strainer.
While your waiting for that to cool down cut up your carrots, celery and half the onion.
Put your soup base into the pot and mix it up. I also add 2 containers of chicken broth as a lot of the water will have evaporated from cooking the chicken. If your not making the full recipe then you probably won’t need any chicken broth.
Turn the heat back to high and bring to a boil. While your waiting for the broth take the skin off your chicken and cut it up into pieces. We only eat white meat so I only cut up the breasts but the entire chicken adds so much flavor to the broth.
In a large pan heat a small amount of oil. Once heated add the other half of the onion until softened. Add the garlic for a few minutes, stirring. Add your escarole over low heat and cover stirring occasionally for about 12 minutes or until wilted.
In your pot of boiling water add the escarole, the cut up chicken, carrots, celery, onion and noodles.
Cook for as long as the noodle package directs you to.
Allow to cool off and enjoy!
If you tried my recipe let me know what you thought!
Be on the lookout for my homemade egg noodle recipe. They are very thick noodles and very irresistible. I prefer to make them when I have the time.
I have avoided this day for many years. A trip to Build A Bear. My daughter has hinted many times over the years she wanted to go. My opinion was always that they were over priced bears that you treat like humans by dressing them up. While that still holds true the sparkle in a kids eyes is worth the over priced stuffed animals they sell. You know that look. When walking into that place it’s as if they are shopping for a best friend. It’s the same sparkle I get when I walk into my favorite clothing store.
The one wall is lined with many different bears and other animals to choose from. They range them from cheapest to most expensive. I appreciate that to make it easier to tell my kid how far they can go. Once they pick the bear out you take it to get stuffed. The nice lady instructed her to pick a heart. A tiny, soft, red, 5 freaking dollar heart. How do you tell your kid that the animal they picked out can’t have a heart for crying out loud? They tell them to touch their head with it to make it smart, touch their ear so it listens and many other things. Like I said they are picking out a new best friend.
Oh and let’s not forget the Find A Bear program. They put a code inside the bear before sewing it up. If it gets lost and some kind soul returns it to build a bear they will contact you. I wonder how successful they are with that program.
Then you go on to picking out clothing and dress your new best friend. They have dressing areas just for this task.
They have many different types of clothing you can dress your new best friend in. Penguins hockey gear, halloween outfits, clothing from Justice, among many others. Lucky for me my daughter choose a Justice outfit that was on sale, but insisted on adding a pair of shoes for almost the same price as the clothing. I could have bought her a pair of shoes for that price!
If that wasn’t enough you get to take your friend to the wash station and give it a bath. It’s so cruddy from being dragged all over the store so why not.
The last step is creating a birth certificate and giving it a name. You will get an email to access an online world to play with your new friend.
They make it easy enough for a kid to do and I do love the keyboards. I want one.
Then I get to pay for the sucker, ooops, new best stuffed friend. My total for my daughters bear came to $36.85 with a donation to something or other they asked me to donate to. I actually expected it to be higher so I am happy and my daughter and her cousins have a new best friend.
So while I still think they are overpriced I actually had a good time as did the kids. All the employees were very nice and helpful.
My favorite part of the day, besides how happy they all were, was the name my nephew gave his bear.
You read that right. His monkey is named Funky Butt. He is awesome!
We all know I hate any season that isn’t summer. I spend much of my time letting everyone know that. I have to take it back though. I love, love, love summer and the heat. I can tolerate and find great things about other seasons as well.
Fall is here. I haven’t been able to smell the wet leaves yet but a trip to Simmons Farm was a great way to get into the fall fever. Simmons is about 30 minutes south of Pittsburgh. Over the years I have visited many different farms that have hay rides and pumpkin picking but this is my favorite one of them all.
For $10.75 per person you get:
Hayride to the field
one ear of indian corn
small cup of apple cider
100 ft slide
3 acre corn maze
hay maze and smaller corn maze for younger kids
Depending on weather and how many people are there is also:
apple sling shot
We choose a great day to go. It was definitely a chilly fall morning which kept many away until later in the afternoon.
Once you pay you walk through a greenhouse like structure where there are pumpking carving examples,
a corn playbox,
At the end of that you will find the area to wait for a tractor to come and pick you up. We didn’t wait long at all before we were on our way. The girls enjoyed the extra leg room.
It’s nice that adults can be just as silly as the kids.
Once we got to the field the girls wanted to shoot straight for the pumpkins. I reminded them that if we do that first they would have to carry the pumpkins around while they do the activities. I sure wasn’t carrying it. So they headed straight for the 100 ft slide where there was no line. I would have gone on myself but I knew I didn’t want to walk back up the hill and have to walk the pumpkin fields too.
We had to stop and pose for our pictures. A friend that came on the trip suggested I should be the witch. Hmmmm I didn’t have anything nice to say so I became the scarecrow. Maybe I should have went with the witch?
Kids aren’t the only ones who behave like kids here. This coming from the same jackass that suggested I be the witch
After he was done goofing off we went to the corn maze to play hide and seek with the kids. What the kids didn’t know is that they were playing hide and seek with us. We were running around the maze trying to get out all the while trying to keep them in. What we didn’t know is they were cheating by cutting through the corn instead of going through the path. Guess the joke was on all of us.
There was a beautiful tree I had to get a picture of. If I wasn’t so tired I might have walked up there to sit under it.
We walked through the pumpkin patches for what seemed like forever. My shoes were getting wet and muddy and honestly I don’t want to know what else was on my shoes. It was fun chasing the girls all over. They were excited to find the biggest pumpkin they could. Mind you my rule was you had to be able to carry it yourself. I didn’t think kids were that strong but I guess I was wrong.
At the petting zoo were a few very cute animals. They were relatively young and small enough that they weren’t frighting. Well unless they try to eat your purse, which they did to my friend. Then you have a few who turn around and have the nastiest dingle berries hanging from you know where. Yuck. Lucky for you I don’t have any pictures of that to share with you. Instead we have a goat chewing on another goat.
We had a great day at Simmons Farm. If your in the Pittsburgh area I recommend going out for a visit. They also have apple picking that I would like to go back and do sometime.
My grandmother taught me how to make these. You could make them for chicken and dumpling soup however we prefer to fry them up in butter and onions and server them as a side dish.
1 c water
1 tsp. salt
4 c flour
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
Mix all ingredients together in a bowl. Adjust if needed. If too stiff add water, if too wet add flour.
I like stiff dough, my grandmothers is not as stiff. So if you prefer use half the amount of water.
Boil water with 1/2 tsp. salt. When comes to boil, put dumplings in by tsp fulls.
When the float they are done.
Unless you have a very large pot you will have to do this in batches. Place them on a paper towel to drain.
If desired fry in butter and onions until slightly browned.
This recipe serves about 8-10 side dishes. You can put any leftovers in a container and refrigerate.
This past Saturday I was very happy to be able to take another trip down the Strip District to shop in the new Pittsburgh Public Market since my last visit during the preview. This trip I planned on making some purchases and brought my own bags for that purpose. I find the concept of the public market wonderful. It will especially come in handy when the Burgh is freezing and outdoor farmers markets won’t be possible. This trip I had hubby by my side to get him excited about shopping there. Why do I want him excited? I want to go as often as I can and since I don’t drive I kind of need his assistance
We started by walking around to see what vendors had and grabbed a cup of coffee from La Prima Espresso. They have very strong but very good coffee. I wanted to buy many of the products I saw but I had to be realistic about what I could purchase. It is pretty overwhelming as there are so many different items available. Besides food there are handmade items. This trip my focus was on food.
My first purchase was from Goose Creek Gardens. Not only do they have fresh herbs and greens they have honey from their own hives. It’s getting colder out and this is the time of year I love to have a cup of warm tea at night to which I add honey to it. The herbs and greens looked wonderful. I will have to try them another time as I had already purchased those items and didn’t need any.
Considering we have a new puppy in the house I had to hit up the Four Paws Bakery. They don’t have a website that I can locate but they provide all natural homemade treats as well as Steelers gear for your puppy. They had so many different types of treats. I glared over them all many times thinking what on earth my Baby would enjoy. Hubby suggested we get the plain biscuits since they were tiny enough for our tiny puppy to eat. If she likes those we can get something else next time. I think the price was pretty deacent too at $2.75 for the bag. Hubby later told me a few of the cheese ones had mold on it so please keep your eye out. He said the guy did remove them when he pointed it out.
European Desserts also does not have a website but they are on Urbanspoon. Apparently they have a store in Bridgeville. Hubby was engrossed in the strudels. I was engrossed in the tiny little mice.
We went home with an Apple Strudel. Warming it up in the microwave led to a yummy dessert to share. Well, I got about two bites he ate the rest.
After looking at and buying food we were both starving. There was a place called Sito’s, a Mediterranean cafe, handing out free samples of a wrap they serve. After one bite I was in love. I stared at the menu for awhile and after looking at the ingredients I wasn’t too sure I wanted to brave it. Could it really be that good? I told the girl I wanted the wrap they were offering as a sample. She was already making one and asked what I wanted on it. I told her whatever was in the sample just don’t tell me what’s in it! Hubby liked it but said it was just too much for him to eat as a meal. It was delicious. I couldn’t eat all of it so I wrapped it up to take home. Unfortunately the amount of oil they put on it made it pretty soggy later so it’s defiantly something to eat there or share.
We couldn’t let hubby starve now could we? Last stop Gosia’s Pierogies. The man would eat pierogies any day if I let him. That and cereal. He stood in line and ordered 6 pierogies for himself. I could barely get a bite from him he hoarded them all like he wouldn’t eat again. He said he knew when they didn’t speak very good english they would taste great. Next time we are getting some frozen to take home. I do regret not doing that.
If you have not been to the Pittsburgh Public Market you really should go at least once! There is great food, the vendors are very friendly and once you go you will want to return.