Monday, September 5, 2011

Easy Slow Cooker Chicken Soup on a HOT DAY!

So, I have to share with you my easy, breezy way I make soup.  No, I don't just open a can or a box and pour the soup out.  Although, that does work.  Nope, this involves your leftover carcass from the chicken (or turkey) you just made in your slow cooker, the yummies still sitting in there, a few veggies and some water.

When your bird is done a cookin'~ (see my post on crock pot chicken here) remove the bird from the slow cooker and leave the goodness that is in the bottom sit there.  Get some clean, filtered water and fill that slow cooker up to about 3 inches from the top.  Turn your slow cooker on low.

Cut up some veggies... what ever may please your palate.  I use a couple carrots, celery, maybe an onion, some garlic. (I usually do this after dinner, during cleanup)

After I have removed all the meat from the bones that I can, I dump carefully put the carcass back into the slow cooker.  I let it sit for 12 hours.(almost always overnight)  I did not include a picture.  No one wants to see chicken bones.  Eww.

After 12 hours I get a big metal spoon and smoosh the bones.  This breaks them up and releases more of the marrow to get all the goodness into the broth.  Bone marrow cooked into the soup broth is very healing for your gut.  It contains all kinds of goodness your bodies need!  (I do this around breakfast the next morning)

I let sit about 8-12 more hours.

I then turn off the slow cooker and let cool a bit. (I do this at as I prepare dinner)

I put a stainless steel strainer over a stainless steel bowl and pour the broth into the strainer.  This catches all the big bits.  I let the strainer cool and pull out any meat I may have missed.  (I do this during dinner clean up)  Again, this is just not pretty, nothing you would want to see a picture of.  Double Ewwww!

To make the soup I follow this recipe (or shall we say~ throw it in soup)
1 diced carrot
1 diced onion
1-3 stalks diced celery
sometimes a cup of shredded zucchini
1 cup of cooked rice or some rice noodles broken up into smallish pieces
leftover chicken from the previous nights dinner
seasonings can be: powdered garlic, salt, dried oregano, powdered onion, etc.

Cook this in a large stock pot for about 30-40 minutes on medium and let is simmer, turn off and let cool. (I put is away before I go to bed)

I then will put it in glass containers to freeze, but be careful here you don't over fill or they will crack and break when the soup expands as it freezes.  Or you can put the soup in the fridge for the next day.  I love to use Pyrex glass dishes in individual serving sizes.  Then I can pull out as needed.

Maybe this does sound like a lot of work, but I find it is 1-2 minute tasks over a 24 hour period and it really just doesn't seem to take that much physical labor.  It is a habit I have formed and don't even think to much about.  We always have a quick soup I can pull out to reheat which is a huge blessing.

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