26
Jan
11

Winter Chicken Noodle Stew

I’ve gone back and forth about whether to post this one. For the past couple of months, I’ve shared recipes that I absolutely love: chicken korma, Turkish lentil soup, cashew chicken chili, etc. But food blogging isn’t just about the rock stars, right? Not everything we make or eat is off-the-charts fantastic.

Take this winter chicken noodle stew, for example. It’s hearty, warm, incredibly healthy, and pretty quick to put together. It could have used a squeeze of lemon juice, or something else to add a bit more zing. Red pepper flakes, perhaps. All in all, it was a good solid stew. But it wasn’t a 10. It wasn’t even an 8.

OK, I admit. I wasn’t thrilled with the way it turned out. Jeff claimed to like it a lot. He enthusiastically ate several bowls of it. Both of us agreed that the Parmesan is essential. It adds a bit of saltiness that’s very much needed.

This a is a very thick stew, not at all like the chicken noodle soup most of us are used to. The mix of carrots, parsnips, onions and celery create subtle flavors. If you like subtle, you will like this stew. Will I make this again? Perhaps. But it’s not at the top of my list.

Winter Chicken Noodle Stew
barely adapted from Martha Stewart Living Annual Recipes 2003

12 ounces boneless chicken thighs (about 4 pieces)
1 pound boneless and skinless chicken breasts halves (about 3 pieces)
1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
4 carrots, cut into 3/4-inch pieces
3 large celery stalks, cut into 3/4-inch pieces
2 medium parsnips, peeled, cut into 3/4-inch pieces
4 small onions, roughly chopped
3 1/2 cups water
1 14 1/2-ounce can chicken broth
1 tablespoon fresh rosemary leaves or 1 teaspoon dried
1/2 pound wide egg noodles
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
5 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1 bunch Swiss chard, leaves and stems coarsely chopped
2 ounces Parmesan cheese, freshly grated

Cut chicken into 1-inch pieces. Season with salt and pepper. Heat a 6-quart pot or Dutch oven over medium heat. Add half the chicken. Cook, turning occasionally until chicken is browned, about 7 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl. Repeat steps with the remaining chicken. Set aside.

Place carrots, celery, parsnips and onions to the pot or Dutch oven. Add the water, broth and rosemary. Use a wooden spoon to scrape the browned bits from the bottom. Cover, and bring to a simmer over low heat. Cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are slightly tender, about 10 minutes.

In another pot, cook noodles until al dente according to package instructions. Drain. Stir noodles, parsley, reserved chicken into pot with vegetables. Cook until chicken is heated through, about 1 to 2 minutes. Remove from heat. Keep warm.

Meanwhile, melt better in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add garlic; stir until golden, about 1 minute. Add chard. Cook, turning every now and then until tender, about 5 minutes. Divide the chard among six bowls. Ladle stew on top. Serve with grated Parmesan.

Serves 6.

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