My Mom's Chicken Noodle Soup

Homemade "red" chicken noodle soup

Nothing says love like homemade soup.  It is the ultimate comfort food - especially in winter, or if you don't feel well.  My mom used to make this soup, and it was my favorite.  It usually was a part of my birthday meal.  When my mom died before I married, one of my biggest losses was she didn't write down a lot of her recipes.  My brother and I tried to figure out why my mom's soup was red, and finally figured out her secret ingredient - a can of V-8 juice!  This is a great recipe to make after you roast a chicken or turkey.  If you are not roasting a bird, just buy a Wegman's cooked Roaster, trim some of the meat, and throw that in the pot!  I usually use the plain roaster, or lemon garlic - be sure to remove the lemon first!

2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon of poultry seasoning, or sage
bones and trimmings of 1 turkey or chicken
5 cubes of chicken bouillon
1 bay leaf
1 teaspoon of whole black peppercorns
10 cups of water
1 5.5 oz can of V-8, or slightly larger can up to 8 oz.
3-5 medium carrots, peeled and cut in half
2 stalks celery
1 onion, cut in chunks
1 bunch of fresh parsley, or 1 Tablespoon of dried parsley
2 cups of dried noodles, rhen cooked (usually I like thin egg noodles or stellini - star pasta) it will yield about 4 cups of noodles - adjust if you like thinner soup.

In a large pot, combine all ingredients except pasta.  Simmer about 1 hour.  Remove chicken and bones, and veggies.  Strain the broth into another pot.  Slice carrots, cut up meat and add to the soup.  Meanwhile, cook the pasta, rinse and drain.  Add pasta to the soup.  My kids don't like the onion or celery in the soup, so I don't add it back.  You get the taste from simmering it the first hour.  Simmer to blend all ingredients, and serve.  If you re-heat, you may need to add some chicken broth.  We like LOTS of noodles, so you can cut back a bit if it suits your taste.  Great with crusty rolls or french bread and a nice salad for dinner.