O'Charley's Chicken Harvest Soup

O’Charley’s Chicken Harvest Soup

¼ lb butter
¾ cup flour
2 ½ to 3 quarts water
2 tbsp chicken base
2 quarts chicken stock (refer chicken tenders recipe below )
1 lb fresh carrots, diced
6 to 7 ribs celery, diced
1 medium onion, diced
¾ tspn white pepper
¾ tspn garlic powder
cooked chicken tenders (see recipe below)
10 oz egg noodles

In a large pot, melt butter. Add flour and cook 3 to 4 minutes.
Slowly add the 2½ to 3 quarts of water, stirring constantly. (The amount of water used depends on how thick you want the soup.)
Simmer 20 minutes. Add chicken base and chicken stock.
While chicken stock mixture is cooking, bring 2 quarts of water to a boil in a separate pot. Add carrots, celery and onion. Cook 6 minutes. Drain.
Add to chicken stock mixture along with white pepper and garlic powder. Simmer 10 minutes. Add diced cooked chicken tenders.
Cook noodles in a separate pan of boiling water for 3 to 4 minutes. Drain and rinse with cold water. Add to soup. (Noodles will continue cooking in the soup.) Simmer soup 2 or 3 minutes more and serve. Makes 8 to 10 servings.

For Chicken Tenders :
2 quarts water
2 tbsp chicken base
1 small onion, cut into quarters
½ rib celery, cut into 2" segments
2 ½ lbs chicken tenders, thawed

In a large pot, bring water, chicken base, onion and celery to simmer. Add chicken. Gently simmer until done, about 5 to 6 minutes. Do not overcook. Drain chicken and reserve stock. (This can be used for the stock in the preceding recipe.) Place chicken in the freezer to stop the cooking process.
When cool, use a sharp knife to dice into ½" cubes. Add to soup.

Kitchen Witch, you sound just like someone who can help me. I have tried and tried and tried to make a rich chicken stock but no matter whos recipe I use it seems to be weak. How can I solve this problem without resorting to using my chicken base, which is on order from my grocer? Thanks for your help.

nan - I agree with you on the chicken broth “thing” - I don’t know what they are doing to chickens today - but the broth of today is not as hearty as the broth we got years ago. When I make a pot of soup using raw chickens - I use 2 hens for my broth - not one. One bird just doesn’t give the flavor. You can add a couple chicken bouillon cubes or teaspoons of chicken granules if you want. As far as chicken base - I don’t like it - to me it seems to give a greasy broth and taste.

I know it seems like a lot of chicken using 2 birds - but I make chicken salads and other chicken dishes using the cooked chicken - no waste at all.

I also make stock from chicken carcasses from roasted chickens (just like I do turkey) and sometimes I need to add bouillon to it.

Holly Farms used to have a great chicken - made great stock - Purdue bought them out and that was the end of the good tasting chickens.