Serves 6 easily.
- 2 frozen chicken quarters. Bring to boil and reduce to medium low for 90 minutes with 3 bay leaves, a tsp black peppercorns, and 2 quarts/litres water. Remove chicken and set aside. (You can also do this part ahead of time and refrigerate, or crock-pot it first thing in the morning. If using a crock-pot, transfer the stock to a regular stove-top pot after the chicken is cooked.)
- To the stock in the pot, add 2 more quarts/litres water and bring to boil. Add 1 tsp kosher or coarse salt.
- Add pasta odds and ends of similar size (I added short tube macaroni and mini-seashells). Let boil 5 minutes, stirring so the pasta doesn't stick to the bottom. Then turn down to medium heat.
- Meanwhile, chop whatever vegetables you may have nearing their
end-date in your fridge drawer, freezer or on your shelf. Try to keep
everything a similar size for even cooking. Here is what went into my
o Baby carrots (1/2 cup)
o Asparagus (1/2 cup)
o 6 cloves garlic
o Small onion, chopped
o 3 scallions, white and green parts, chopped
o Frozen green peas (3/4 cup)
o Frozen yellow corn kernels (1/2 cup)
- Frozen ripe cherry tomatoes (approx 12) added last
- I also added:
o Leftover homemade mild salsa (chopped tomatoes, onions, green jalapeño peppers, seasonings), approximately 1/2 cup
o Tomato vegetable cocktail juice (1 cup)
- Remove all the flesh from the chicken quarters, chop and return to soup as vegetables are close to tender.
- For seasonings, I added:
o 2 tsp Cajun seasoning
o 1 Tbsp instant chicken soup mix (the yellow evil kind)
o Shake of dried oregano
o Red pepper flakes (adjust to your taste)
o 1/4 tsp ground black pepper
- Add more water, if desired, and simmer until you get the consistency you prefer. Some families like soup, some like stew. Ours is in-between.