Stuck-in-the-House Slow Cooker Chicken Noodle Soup

 

Rhonda Franz, slow cooker chicken noodle soup recipe

Here is the end product (we like it thick).

This recipe would be regular old Slow Cooker Chicken Soup on any other day. But not today. Mid America is having another snow day, (not that we’re counting), and we’re cookin’ up chicken at our house.

Or to be more specific, I let the deli at the grocery store cook up a chicken. Because the cost of these isn’t much and it’s worth skipping the whole cooking the whole thing and bleaching the kitchen counters afterwards and son on. So I buy the chicken already done. The flavor this chicken meat and skin adds to the soup is superb.

Ingredients

  • 1 cooked rotisserie chicken
  • 1/4 c. fresh parsley, chopped (This is kind of a lot of parsley, and results in quite the robust flavor. If it’s too much, maybe just use 1/8 c. or so. Of course, you can use dried parsley as well, which in my experience isn’t as potent).
  • 1/2 c. diced onion, sautéed
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced (See below for how I mince my garlic on most days)
  • 1 lb. package egg noodles
  • 2 – 2 1/2 qts chicken broth (2 if you like your soup thick like stew, 3 if you like your soup with a good deal of broth)
  • 1 Tbsp. seasoning salt
  • salt and pepper to taste

Directions

Pull meat and skin off the bone and tear into bite size chunks. Place in slow cooker along with all the other ingredients except noodles. Mix well. Cook on high 4 hours or low 8-10 hours, stirring occasionally. Add egg noodles to slow cooker 20 minutes before serving and stir.

* Note: Adding egg noodles is where the broth really gets soaked up. You might add your noodles, stir and wait a bit, and take stock of how the soup looks. Even after serving, you can always add broth to the leftover soup for refrigerating or freezing. We like ours kind of thick, almost like a bowl full of noodles.

 

rhonda franz, slow cooker chicken noodle soup

I use a garlic press like this to mince my garlic. I don’t regret buying this at a kitchen store in Eureka Springs, Arkansas. I do regret that it went in the dishwasher, where it collected a nasty tarnish. I do not regret that people in this house are putting things directly into the dishwasher, rather than on the counter right above it. But I digress.

Rhonda Franz, snow day slow cooker chicken noodle soup

I sauté my onions before adding. It brings out the sweetness, and I can add lots more flavor to the soup without the bitterish taste of uncooked onions.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This is what the broth looks like pre-noodles. If, by chance, you’ve gone paleo, or you’re just cutting down on your carbs, reserve some of this before adding noodles. It’s all good.

Rhonda Franz, slow cooker chicken soup recipe

 

Now, while my kids are eating Shirley Temple Snow Cones for dessert, I ladle this soup into quart-size jars for refrigerating or freezing (if you freeze the soup, leave an inch or so at the top of the jar to allow for the food to expand). If you’re into canning, so much the better. But the soup doesn’t last long in the refrigerator at our house, and I bet it won’t at yours, either.

This recipe was first published in Our Daily Bread, the Springdale, Arkansas Spring Creek Fellowship cookbook. If you’re in a cooking slump, nothing will heal your soul (and ultimately feed your family) like searching through the recipes of a church cookbook. Gems in those, I tell you. Gems.

9 Ways to Diffuse Your Anger (Before You Take It Out on your Kids)

rhonda franz, parenting, diffuse anger

Getting angry is easy. It’s a human reaction to stress, frustration, and people, in our lives.

Since our children are often the ones we allow to trigger our anger, it’s good to have plan. Nothing fancy, mind you, just a few simple, but immediate things we can do in the midst of heated moments, before anger turns into something physically or internally damaging.

1. Walk back. Physically take a few steps away from your child, and pause.

2. Smile. Even if it’s strained.

3. Pray. Life up your eyes, your hands, your heart, and just pray.

4. Count. (I don’t mean the count-to-three thing you do while expecting your child to obey by the end of it). Count for yourself to calm down.

5. Put yourself in a time out. That might mean putting your child in one too – in his room or, if need be,  Take time to cool down.

6. Tell your child you love him. Even if your voice is tense.

7. Start singing (preferably a song your child knows, and can join in on). This just might diffuse the tension and get you both participating in something together.

8. Pick up your phone. Use it to call a trustworthy friend or family member, who can listen to you, or talk with you. If there’s no one to call, go ahead and give yourself permission to use it as a distraction.

9. Get outside. Both of you, all of you. Get out where you can be seen by neighbors and people passinb by, and yell at a tree (instead of your child), and where the sun can shine on you. Play together, check the mail, fetch the paper, sweep the porch, water the garden – whatever helps you channel your heated energy into something else.

screaming photo (don’t you just sometimes feel that way?) courtesy of ralaenin on stock.xchng

Memo to My Strong-Willed Son: You’re in My Sight

 

rhonda franz

I see you.

Many days, I’m ashamed to say, I see your disobedience and your grimaced face and the look on your face when you’re in “not” mode. The mode when you absolutely are not going to do what you’re asked, or go along with whatever we’re doing that moment as a family.

I see you just before a transition of any kind—getting in the car, dropping you off to preschool, picking you up from preschool, ending a book – and I’m tense. What will happen this time? Am I prepared for it? Are you?

I see your mouth tighten with stubbornness, your hands reach for things you’re not supposed to have, and your fingers destroy everything from books to toys to childproof locks.

I see your frequent states of sad and mad and frustrated, visible from the top of your head to the tip of your toes.

I see your contorted face when textures and sounds and the world in general around bother you and you’re in a cycle of confusion and discomfort.

And other days, thankfully, and not without God’s blessings and ultimate example of love and mercy, I see other things.

The most kissable cheeks in the universe.

One of the best smiles I’ve ever witnessed.

A husky laugh, distinctively all your own.

A head filled with a mind that comes up with the most interesting thoughts, solutions, and questions.

I see your happy, excited moments, visible from the top of your head to the tip of your toes.

I see a strong, vivacious, boy whose spirit is a force to be reckoned with. And whose mama must choose, in all the other pained moments, to see the good.

 

What do you see today? Join Lisa-Jo Baker and Five Minute Friday.

Coffee House Mom

Snow Day Activities for Parents (Not Kids)

We’re on infinity snow days, parents.coffee house mom

I have honestly enjoyed fun times with my boys, but this long stretch of anti-routine days is going to do us all in if we’re not careful. We’ve done crafts, clay, crayons, cars, blocks, games, play dough, books, Lincoln Logs, indoor football,  indoor tag, and other things that should not ever be played indoors.

We’ve removed holiday decorations and put away laundry and perfected the art of the perfect fire. We’ve made snow candy and snow cones and lots and lots of popcorn.

And we’ve not even scratched the surface of all that Pinterest and mom blogs and parent sites have to offer.

We’ve even kept up on school skills at home in an attempt to try and right the wrongs caused by these ice-packed streets. Writing, math facts, spelling words, and sight words. Check, check, check, and check.

Moms and Dads, don’t get lost in keeping kids educated and entertained and out of each other’s personal space. There are easy ways to entertain and take care of yourself during this time.

1. Add Kahlua to your hot chocolate. Every day. You’re not driving anyway.

2. Don’t let your young kids know that school isn’t closed (social media makes this impossible with older ones). Send them to bed each night at their normal time, and take some time for yourself. Inform them of the snow day in the morning.

3. During the sub zero wind chills, announce that the consequence for inappropriate behavior is playing outside.

4. After they’ve gone to bed, remove all the noise-making toys from the house. After the fifth snow day and two weeks of Christmas break, you’re gonna need all the quiet you can muster.

5. Institute Snow Day drills. They must don all winter clothes – extra layers and accessories included – by themselves. Twice. Sip on your hot chocolate + liquor during this time.

 

yummy photo of hot chocolate courtesy of stock.xchng and timbec.