Friday, May 14, 2010

Chicken Noodle Soup and Paninis with Sundried Tomato and Basil Paninis

I love homemade chicken noodle soup  If you are buying yours out of a can...ugh!  Stop it!  No really, it is super easy.  If you make your own stock you can use that (I know you are all saying, "ya right") otherwise you can easily use store bought low sodium chicken broth.  Once you see how easy it is to make chicken noodle soup, you will not buy canned again.  At least that is my intent in putting this on my blog. 

I know most of us are cooking on the grill now that it is nice outside.  If you add a couple extra bone-in chicken breasts, you are gonna think this is WAY TO EASY.  I roasted two chickens the other night (see blog entry for how to's).  I kept two of the chicken breasts set aside so that I could use them for this soup.  If you do not have cooked chicken on hand all you do is roast two chicken breasts (bone-in, skin on) at 350 degrees for 35-40 minutes.  Make sure you drizzle with olive oil and season generously with salt and pepper. 

For the soup you simply chop 2 stalks of celery and 3 medium carrots.  I actually had packaged carrot chips that I just threw in (about 1 cup).  Bring 2 quarts of chicken stock (homemade or store bought) to a simmer in a large pot.  Add vegetables and egg noodles (I used whole wheat).  Simmer about 10 minutes, uncovered.   

While that is cooking, dice or shred the chicken off of the bone.  I just pull the meat off with my hands into bite size pieces.  You could use boneless skinless chicken breast too.  The bone-in roasting just makes it have so much more flavor.  Do what is easiest for you and adapt to your liking.  You can chop 1/4 cup of fresh parsley and add it to your soup. 

No idea why it is sideways.   Sorry.  I tried to fix it. 

That's it.  It's ready.  Basically you are putting broth, carrots, celery, chicken, noodles and some herb into a pot for 10 minutes!  If you have the leftover chicken on hand you are literally done cooking in about 15 minutes.  Fast, healthy and delicious. 

Now I have boys that have hearty appetites, so I made paninis with it.  I sliced Italian bread from the bakery and drizzled the outsides with olive oil.  For the filling I sliced fresh mozzarella, sun dried tomatoes and fresh basil.  I put it all in between the bread and onto the panini press. 


Everyone always thinks these are so amazing, but it really just a glorified grilled cheese sandwich.  lol.  I love them, though. 


If you don't have a panini press, just make them in a pan like you would a grilled cheese. 


Add whatever ingredients your family loves. This is a pic from last weeks paninis my youngest son and I had for lunch.  He requested spinach on his sandwich.  These were loaded with sauteed spinach, prosciutto, sun dried tomatoes and mozzarella cheese.  YUM.


These were fantastic with the soup.  There are NEVER any leftovers!

Here is a pic of a spinach, prosciutto, cheese and tomato one from last week.

Enjoy!  Give it a try.

The recipe for the soup was from my favorite Ina Garten cookbook, Barefoot Contessa Family Style. 

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