Before I begin with this tribute to grandma and her fabulous cooking, a question for you. I’ve been thinking about compiling all the recipes into a cookbook that I would make available for sale. Any thoughts on that? I’d love to hear what you think about it.
And now, for a little bit about my grandma. Her name was Nieves which is now my middle name. Her father was a blacksmith so that meant her family was a little better off than those in her little village in Galicia in Spain.
Nieves was a very determined lady. She followed the love of her life to Cuba to find a better way of life and then took care of her daughter’s two little girls (my sister and me) for nearly two years as we tried to make our way out of Cuba and to the United States.
She was loving and cared for us daily since my mom worked. We were very lucky to have her and granddad living with us. He was a kind, loving and gifted man who could make or fix anything with his hands. They both sacrificed a lot for us and for my mom and for that I am eternally grateful.
My grandma could cook something truly delicious with what she had at home. Nothing went to waste. Nothing. So today’s recipe is my grandma’s recipe for soup, but with some changes. First, however, a picture of my grandparents and my mom!
Grandma’s Chicken Soup . . . Kind of
2 chicken breasts
chicken parts if you have them (necks, wings and backs)
1/2 cup finely chopped carrots
1/4 cup finely chopped celery greens (the inside part of the hearts)
1/2 cup finely chopped onions
32 oz chicken broth
32 oz water
1 leek, sliced
2 or 3 sprigs of fresh parsley
1 cup sliced carrots (on a bias for a little nicer look)
4 small corn cobs (or 2 large ones snapped in half)
egg noodles (as many as you like! I like my soup really noodlely)
Saute chicken breasts in a large stockpot until just starting to brown.
Add chopped carrots, celery and onions and sweat until onions are translucent. Do not brown.
Add broth, water, leek, parsley and bring to a slow boil. Do not make it too hard a boil as it will cloud the broth.
Let simmer for at least one hour. If you used chicken parts also, now is the time to remove them, take off any chicken meat and return just the meat to the pot.
Add carrots and corn and cook for another hour. Taste for salt and add if necessary. Remove parsley sprigs.
Add noodles when you are just ready to eat. Too far ahead and they will be soggy and soak up all the broth. One trick to consider is to boil the noodles in some chicken broth on their own and add to the plates as you serve. This will let you keep the rest of the soup for longer and also adjust noodlelyness (LOL!) to each person’s likes.
For an added zip of taste, serve with lemon slices and squeeze a little juice into the soup.
For another added zip, dice up some ripe avocado and spoon about 1/3 cup into the soup bowls. Yummy!
You can also substitute cheese tortellini for the noodles for a change of pace.
Hope you enjoyed today’s recipe.