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Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Chicken and Noodles...For My Main Squeeze

You may recall my November 2010 post about the Indiana branch of the family making homemade noodles a part of their holiday meals.  We had them at Thanksgiving (yum) and we were on the road Christmas no big Christmas meal.  We had a huge Christmas breakfast at Katz's in Austin...because after 31 years in business, they are shutting their doors on January 2nd.  Katz's is an Austin institution, so we felt we had to pay homage before they closed their doors.  John, the teen, my middle son, and myself waited in a 25 minute very chilly line, waited over an hour for our food, and never felt cranky.  The people in line, the wait staff, our family...all reminiscing about the closing of a 24-hour-a-day New York-style Jewish deli in the heart of Austin's 6th street music scene and theatre scene.  No pork products sold there!  But, they ARE open on of the few places you'll find serving breakfast Christmas morning in Austin, Texas!  Their sign says "Katz's Never Kloses!"  Unfortunately, bankruptcy and not paying their payroll taxes begged to differ.  I'm really glad we got to say farewell...but that brings us back to "Christmas dinner", or lack thereof.

I had 1/2 the batch of hand-rolled noodles in the freezer just waiting for my hubby to get home...and when I told him we had noodles and I would make them tonight, he was one happy dude!  Even the teen agreed he would try them (he was a "no go" on Thanksgiving I was unsure if he would ever give them a try).  I asked him if he would try them if I put mushrooms in them?  He reluctantly agreed, but I wasn't sure he would actually follow through.

So I went to H.E.B. and bought 3 bone-in chicken breasts, with the skin on (something I never buy) and decided I would roast them off.  I covered a baking tray with aluminum foil, sprinkled the chicken breasts, skin side up, with onion powder, garlic powder, salt, and pepper.  Then, I sliced up 1/2 of a yellow onion and sprinkled the slices all over the chicken.  Roasted at 375 degrees for 55 minutes.

While that was roasting, and filling the house with a wonderful scent, I added 1 quart of chicken stock and 1 quart of water to a Dutch Oven on the stove top.  I popped in about 1/3 of a stick of butter, salt, pepper, and about 2 teaspoons of poultry seasoning.  Left it sitting there and ready for me.  I prepped an 8oz container of button mushrooms (cleaned with a damp paper towel and sliced).  I also prepped a couple of crowns of broccoli for steaming...that would be our vegetable side dish.  Wheat biscuits were made ready for baking.  I rinsed and drained 2 packages of fresh blackberries on a paper towel....and whipped up some cream with finely granulated sugar and vanilla to top the berries.  A tasty dinner was well on the way.

Once the chicken was cooked, I carefully drained all the "drippings" into the Dutch Oven for more flavor and scraped all of the roasted onion pieces into the pot as well.  I put the chicken breasts on a cutting board to cool to a point I could handle them.  At that point, I turned on the burner to get the broth to a boil.  Once it was boiling, I dropped the frozen noodles a handful at a time, and all of the flour that was in the Ziploc bag with them, straight from the freezer, stirring after each addition, bringing back to a boil after each addition.  Never want to let those babies thaw before dropping in the boiling liquid...they clump together if you do.

Once the noodles were boiling happily, I lowered the heat to medium so we'd have a steady but not overly vigorous boil.  I then removed the skin from the chicken and let my husband have the crispy parts as an appetizer (he would have just died if I'd thrown that away...he loves crispy chicken skin).  I removed the chicken from the bone and cubed it, ready to go in the last 5 minutes or so.  At the point I determined the noodles would be done in about 10 minutes, I dropped the mushrooms in, checked for seasoning, added more salt and pepper, and then added the chicken for about 5-7 more minutes of cooking time.  The broth was thickening due to the noodles and I could tell this was going to be a primo dinner.

I served the chicken and noodles in pasta bowls, and guess who ate two bowls full?  The teen.  The picky eater finally showed his Indiana genetic roots.  I doubt he will ever turn them down again.  The broccoli was perfect, the biscuits with butter and honey were perfect, the berries and whipped cream were dyn-o-mite...but the star of the night was a simple pot of chicken and'd have thought I'd served my people prime rib...I doubt they would have been any happier!

So, there I was looking at all the empty plates and realizing...oh pictures, once again.  Bad blogger, bad blogger :-)  So, you get a photo of the leftovers...but you can definitely see the yumminess shine through.

A ladle full of homemade chicken and noodles

If you want a delicious homey dinner - check out the November post on how to make the "Indiana Noodles by Way of Texas" and make a big pot of chicken and noodles.  Your family will thank you for it, I can almost guarantee! (and in the time it took me to get this post written, I see my husband has gone and gotten a bowl of the leftovers...he loves him some homemade noodles!!!)

Bon Appetit Y'all!!!StumbleUpon

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