Sunday, October 14, 2012

I love this kind of Sunday

Hubby spent the day reading The Fellowship of the Ringto the kids and then watching football while the kids were upstairs building giant forts out of every pillow and blanket in the house.

I spent the day in the kitchen. Hadn't planned on it, but things kept coming up, and at the end of the day, I was looking at this counter full of food. I love it.

Today's breakfast treat was pumpkin doughnut muffins, recommended by Di. I made a half recipe, which made eight muffins. I baked them for 26 minutes; we loved the flavor but they were a tad dry...I'll take them out earlier next time.

Rebecca tweeted about Sara's baked applesauce yesterday, conveniently a day we spent at the orchard. I made 5 pounds of apples with a sprinkling of sugar, cinnamon, and fresh nutmeg, and they baked for about 55 minutes. It made a much smaller yield than I'm accustomed to, but this is easily the best applesauce I've ever tasted in my life (and that's with forgetting to add the pats of butter!).

My little girl has a cold and was sneezy and drippy all morning; I said, "What about chicken noodle soup for dinner tonight?" "YES! [it's a favorite] With flour bread!" That's what the kiddos call ciabatta, because of the dusting of flour. I got right to work, using the recipe from ABED, and letting five hours in the middle of the day sub for the overnight rest it's supposed to get.

And then I remembered reading Deb's post for chicken noodle soup the other day, and decided to give it a try. I always make turkey stock for gravy, but believe it or not, I've never made my own chicken stock for soup. I ended up using a combination of Deb's recipe and the recipe from ATK's family cookbook. Knowing that I wanted broth for tonight's soup, as well as tomorrow's dinner, I upped the recipe by about half. The soup was so good, with a light and clear broth. I'm not sure it will fit into our schedules to make it this way all the time (we eat chicken noodle soup a lot), but if I have a Sunday at home, I can certainly see stocking up (hehe) again.

Finally, I picked up a bag of Meyer lemons at the grocery store today and it's been ages since we've had homemade ice cream, so I whipped up a batch of Meyer lemon curd frozen yogurt.

It was a good day.

Homemade chicken stock
makes 13 cups broth, 6 cups cubed chicken
5 pounds chicken pieces (I used 4 leg quarters and 2 bone-in breasts)
1 1/2 onion, chopped
2 bay leaves
1 T salt
freshly ground pepper
12 c water
1 T safflower oil
1. In large stock pot, heat oil over medium heat. Add onion and cook until softened and beginning to brown, about 4 minutes.
2. Pat chicken dry with paper towels and add half to the pan, making sure the skin is touching the bottom of the pan. Cook 10 minutes, until chicken is nicely browned. Remove first batch of chicken and repeat with second batch.
3. Add remaining ingredients and bring to a boil. Simmer with the lid mostly on until chicken is done (took about 45 minutes for me; some of my chicken pieces were very large). (Skim off scum as necessary.)
4. Remove chicken. Let cool, remove skin and bones, and chop.
5. Strain stock into a large measuring cup.

Chicken noodle soup
makes 7 servings
2 tsp olive oil
1 onion, chopped
3 carrots, chopped
2 celery stalks, chopped
2 parsnips, chopped
1 small potato, chopped
1 tsp dried thyme
8 c broth
6 oz egg noodles
3 c cubed chicken
1. Heat oil in large stock pot (I used the same one I'd cooked the stock in) over medium heat. Add veggies and cook for 4 minutes.
2. Add broth, bring to a boil, and simmer 15 minutes.
3. Add noodles and cook for time on package, adding the chicken for the last 2 minutes of cooking time.
4. Serve with flour bread and fresh baked applesauce. :-)

A simple meal, but it makes me happy to know that I know the ingredients of everything I put on the table because it was all made right here.