Can you hear that? It’s the sound of my family collectively groaning and lamenting that this recipe would be so much better if I would just add the chicken back into it. Sorry everyone, but I don’t eat chicken anymore, and my life has continued on just fine.
That being said, I have been on a quest for this soup since meats have disappeared from my diet. Chicken noodle soup used to be one of my favorite comfort foods, and it’s one of the only things that I really missed. Sure, there are vegetable noodle soups, but most of the ones you see in restaurants are catch-alls for cooks that are trying to use up vegetables that are about to go bad. Nothing I’ve ever seen has been the kind of soup that I want to curl up with on a cold day in winter.
The key to creating a great noodle soup, and the element that has caused me the most frustration, is in the broth. Most vegetable soups incorporate tomato which tends to dominate the taste and is nothing like the simple taste of a basic chicken broth. However, once I discovered Jennifer Perillo’s corn broth, I had finally found a simple base for a delicious veggie noodle soup. I made a big pot early one afternoon and ended up eating it all day long – I absolutely couldn’t get enough. It completely embodies the comfort food I’ve long been missing in the winter months, and is the perfect companion for a chilly day.
Bring it on winter. Bring. It. On.
Veggie Noodle Soup
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons butter
1 small onion, diced
1 small zucchini, diced
1 medium turnip, diced
1 large carrot, diced
1 large celery stalk, diced
8 cups veggie or corn broth (recipe below)
3 cups dried egg noodles
Heat the oil and butter in a large, heavy pot over medium heat. Add in the diced onion and saute until it starts to turn brown and caramelize. Add in the broth and the vegetables. Bring to a boil and simmer for about 5 minutes to soften the veggies. Add in the egg noodles and cook according to package directions, usually around 7 minutes.
If the soup starts to get a little thick, you can always add more water to loosen up the broth again. Ladle into bowls and enjoy!
Recipe adapted from Jennifer Perillo
3 ears of corn with the kernels cut off and saved for a later use
1 large leek (white part only) sliced in half lengthwise and well rinsed
3 cloves of garlic, smashed
8 cups of water
Salt and black pepper to taste
Holding the ears of corn over a large pot, scrape the sides with a butter knife to loosen up all of the “milk” in the cobs. Combine all of the ingredients in the pot and bring to a boil. Simmer for about 20 minutes and then allow to cool. Strain all of the solids from the liquid and set the broth aside.
Stock can be saved in the refrigerator for up to one week.