Peta, of the blog Peta Eats, was our lovely hostess for the Daring Cook‟s
September 2011 challenge, “Stock to Soup to Consommé”. We were taught the
meaning between the three dishes, how to make a crystal clear Consommé if we
so chose to do so, and encouraged to share our own delicious soup recipes!
I planned on making a batch of homemade stock when I bought all those packages of chicken pieces and that roaster last week.
Timing is everything..........
I have been making my Mom's chicken stock as long as I could remember. I think it was one of the first things she taught me how to make (yes, even before Sunday Sauce).
Over the years I probably tweaked it here and there but it has always remained basically the same.
This time around, because I had no range, I decided to make mine in my Crock Pot.
I ended up with 3 quarts of very gelatinous chicken stock.
Homemade Chicken Stock
Makes 3 quarts
* 1 family sized package of chicken legs (thighs would work)(about 10)
* 2 large onions, halved, skins on
* 3 large garlic cloves
* 3 carrots, washed and cut into 1" pieces
* 2 celery stalks, washed and chopped
* 1 large bay leaf
* Handful of Italian Seasonings
* Handful of fresh parsley sprigs
* Handful of fresh thyme sprigs
* 12 whole peppercorns
Place everything in a crock pot and set on LOW for 12 hours. Drain into quart containers and store in the freezer.
The second part of the challenge was to make a soup with the stock and make an accompaniment for the soup. I chose to make a Lentil Soup with a Rosemary Whole Wheat Foccacia.
Italian Sausage and Lentil Soup
1. In a large saucepan, heat one tablespoon of oil. Add one carrot - diced, two stalks of celery- diced, one large onion- chopped and two cloves of crushed garlic. Saute until tender.
2. Remove vegetables from the pan and and add one pound of hot Italian sausage, removed from the casing, to the pan. Brown the drain off fat.
3. In a large stockpot, place eight cups of chicken broth, the sauteed vegetables and the sausage meat. Open two cans of whole tomatoes, break them up by squeezing them with your hands and add to the soup along with the juice. I had a Parmesan rind in my freezer, so I threw that in and added two cups of dried lentils which had been washed according to package directions.
4. Season with one teaspoon of salt, 3/4 teaspoon of black pepper, 1/2 teaspoon of crushed red pepper flakes, 1/2 teaspoon oregano, 1/2 teaspoon thyme, 1/2 teaspoon of fennel seeds and one bay leaf.
5. Simmer until the lentils are tender, 30-45 minutes. Remove 1/3 of the soup and puree it using an hand-held blender, then return it to the pot. Correct seasonings and remove bay leaf. I served this soup with cooked pearl barley. You could also add spinach or chard like Carrabba's does.
I took my whole wheat roll recipe and made a Rosemary Focaccia with it.
I thought the nuttiness of the whole wheat and the flavor of the rosemary would go well with this soup. Any leftover can be used to make a great panini with fontina and prosciutto!!