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Chicken Stock

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I am proposing preparing this soup stock as a base for several instant meals.

But…

you would have to set aside three-quarters of a day, once a month,  to prepare the soup stock, in advance! Yes, I mean freezing it, packs and packs of this flavourful soup!

I have made a couple of tweaks here and there for this recipe. I did not make the noodles from scratch as I lacked the patience.. and confidence (for now) to knead my own dough and make my very own soft chewable noodles (soon…very soon.. I will attempt this!) I did prepare the zucchini the first time I attempted the recipe but the family complained they did not much care for ‘wet cucumber’ in their soup hence I replaced it with green leafy vegetables whenever I used this stock as a soup for cooking noodles.

By the way, the name of the noodles I bought from the supermarket is mentioned below under ‘Ingredients and their Costs’.

I usually prepare this soup stock using a slow cooker. I assemble the ingredients (garlic, onion and chicken breasts) the night before and drop everything into the slow cooker and let it cook overnight ( setting on ‘Low’ for about 8 hours )

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Honestly,  I don’t like to watch over a pot of soup on a stove and like many family carers, have a multitude of household chores to get through on a weekend,  especially if one works five  weekdays and don’t have any form of part-time or full-time help at home  to assist  in all the bric-a-brac of housework.

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This soup stock is really good for making the following:

  1.  Chicken and/or Egg Porridge (will blog on how to slow cook this in a separate post:)

 

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2. Chicken Soup Noodles

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You can completely stop buying all those instant Japanese ramen with flavourful soup stock! They are expensive in the long-run, not forgetting inconvenient as you will have to continually stock up.

Furthermore, after a while, your instincts will tell you it is too salty for your liking and therefore harmful to your health in the future.

So..back to the prep of this soup stock recipe. In the morning, once the soup stock is simmering ready in the slow cooker, then I will just pack everything away in bags and freeze, and that is how I get really healthy comfort meals like chicken noodle soup and chicken porridge whenever I or my family feel like it.

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Use muffin pans to freeze (an idea borrowed from Martha Stewart)

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I usually have to make 2 batches of this chicken stock to freeze so that it can last me for a month (or, if you don’t consume this regularly, you have at the very least chicken stock available when someone falls sick and you need to cook ‘comfort’ food).

The advantages definitely outweigh the time spent.

And it is very tasty!

I actually feel relieved that I have finally found a chicken stock recipe for keeps as it is hard to find a recipe that uses few ingredients, freezes, easy to heat up , acts as an agile base for several other meals and most importantly everyone in the family likes – the last condition not an easy feat as any home cook is fully aware of!

This is a nourishing and comforting soup on a “down-and-out’ day too!

Sometimes, I also use this soup stock to prepare noodle soup for my husband before he leaves for work at least once weekly. He likes it when I cook this soup to prepare noodles as it is homemade and not too salty ( Oh ! I must alert all who are going to act on this recipe to half the recommended fish sauce and salt  if a family member has to watch their salt intake – an important reminder!)

I must have recommended this recipe to quite a few single friends who live on their own as it is quick, easy and convenient to have at hand (in the freezer) and good for those days when you don’t feel well or don’t feel like eating ‘stall’ bought or ‘da bao’ (takeaway) food !

By the way, the shredded chicken marinated in mashed garlic seasoned with salt and black pepper is, to me at least, absolutely divine! The following pictures show how it is prepared –

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This shredded chicken comes in extremely handy as a protein accompaniment to the dishes I had mentioned earlier – it freezes well too!

So whenever you want to cook noodle soup, just pull out 6 muffin blocks of frozen chicken stock (about 550ml of stock), put it in a pot, bring the stock  to a boil, put in about 50 to 80 g of dry noodles (brand recommended below) and set your timer to 5 minutes. Meanwhile, heat up your chicken for about a minute or place it in the pot in the last 1 minute together with the green leafy vegetables like ‘chye sim’ or ‘bak choy’.  When your timer buzzes , your ‘instant’ chicken noodle soup is ready to slurp down 🙂

This is a healthier alternative to instant soup noodles(of which I can hardly pronounce half the names of its seasonings packet ingredients) and also, may I add,  for convalescing patients too (like a family member has had a tooth extraction or having a cough and cold). It really makes for a comforting meal.

So, plan ahead and be on your way to saving some money (costs calculated below), time and therefore sanity! It’s a stock your family members can easily use to whip up a meal for themselves too!!

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(I will always strive to provide the cost per meal at every recipe blog I write – after all we are money savers here :))

Ingredients’ Costs in SGD$ for Chicken Noodle Soup (purchased in NTUC supermarket in Singapore)

  • 3 packets of boneless chicken breast (total:$6.39)
  • a packet of garlic ($1.50)
  • a packet of  yellow onions ($1.20)
  • **3 packets of ‘Xiao Bai  Chye’ (total:$2.16)
  • 1 bottle of fish sauce -700ml ($1.60)
  • **1 pack of  dry noodles-“White Jade Noodle”-340g ($1.85)

Total cost:$14.70

Cost per meal  (based on 4 servings in the recipe) is $3.70 (it’s $2.15 if you already have garlic, onions, fish sauce and dry noodles in your pantry..hurray!!)

You can bundle this homemade stock with a book and noodles as a Christmas gift which I did!

 

 

 

 

 

 

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