It's gonna be Thursday again (restaurant mild rant)

This situation may be a blessing in disguise then. If her kitchen isn’t sanitary, then your immune-supressed sister definitely should not be eating there anyway. It’d be much safer to try to replicate the soup at home.

Very true. Every time she has chemo, 24 hours later, she has a shot called Neulasta that is meant to boost her white blood count. For 72 hours after the shot, she is very prone to infection, and we all get really crazy about washing and sanitizing our hands! I mean, we wash our hands anyway. But for a few days after her shot, I will wash my hands before I so much as get her a glass of iced water.

Actually, that’s a policy I can agree with. It’s one thing to provide several refills for a diner. It’s quite another to provide all-day coffee service to people who just want to get out of the house for a while.

As for chicken soup, I usually cheat and use Lipton Noodle Soup mix (dried, next to Lipton Onion Soup mix), and some cooked cut up chicken. If you want, I’ll post a more formal recipe. This soup mix is easy to keep in the pantry, though, and it makes a tasty broth with noodles by itself. It’s soooo much better than canned soup.

The Kitchen Nightmares episode will be good.

I can think of a town like your situation. There is a place like you describe and a bar that will cook you something edible if you call in advance to get the grill turned on. Otherwise drive to the next town with a few places to eat, but know hugh selection either. It’s an hour to a town with good dining choices.

Oh, actually I agree with it, too! If it’s a small business, you’re already running on a pretty thin profit margin. Coffee’s not terribly expensive, but you don’t want your limited number of booths occupied by people who’ve nothing better to do than sit there and slurp up your profits and read and talk all day!

I was actually thinking of chicken stock in a box (love that stock-in-a-box stuff! You can keep it in the fridge forever, and it doesn’t taste like “can” like the other stuff does!), combined with some shredded deli chicken (the kind you buy already roasted; figured we would have it for dinner one night, and I’d use the rest to make soup instead of chicken salad like I normally do). The Kroger I shop at usually has them on sale for $4.99 with a bonus card, which is cheaper than I could buy a good-sized chicken! Then all I’d need to do is add some celery and onion (my sister wouldn’t eat cooked carrots unless you paid her a lot of money to do it!) and seasonings, cook until it’s all ‘happy’ (a literal cooking term in Casa de new!), then throw in some wide egg noodles, maybe a little more salt (noodles suck it up pretty fast), cook until the noodles are done. Freeze what she doesn’t eat within a couple of days.

This would make a soup I would like, too. So if she gets tired of it all of a sudden, it won’t go to waste!

My slow-cooker recipe for excellent chicken soup:

1 box good quality chicken stock
4 cups water
1-3 pounds bone in chicken (breasts, drummies, thighs, backs, wings) or 1 small whole chicken
1 parsnip cut into 2 inch pieces
1-2 stalks celery cut into 2 inch chunks
8-10 baby carrots or 1-2 cut up carrots
small bunch of fresh dill or 1-2 tbl dried dill
small bunch parsley if you have it
2-3 whole cloves garlic
1 onion whole (even with skins on!)
salt and pepper

Cook on low 6-8 hours in crock pot.

Add noodles near the end or cook separately.

After done, cut up the cooked carrots, celery and parsnips and return to pot
Debone the chicken and shred/chunk and return to pot
Remove dill and parsley if desired
Remove whole onion and garlic cloves and discard
Adjust seasons and add noodles if necessary.


If its been cooking along time, sometimes it’s too rich and I add a bit of water to dilute.
I make this virtually every week on friday during the fall and winter.

My sister makes a very good pressure-cooker chicken noodle soup using the leftovers from rotisserie chickens she gets from Costco. Very fast, extremely tasty, as pressure cooking tends to infuse flavours. And she’s been through chemo and radiation for breast cancer (and thyroid cancer, in the same year). If you want the recipe, I can ask her for it.


Right- I also make the above soup using leftover rotisserie chicken as well. I have a pressure cooker but never tried it- post the recipe if you would, I’d love to see it!

While I’m normally a huge champion of Better Than Bouillon, in this case I’d urge you to make a real chicken stock with bones and veggies instead. She needs the extra nutrition right now, and a real stock is plumb full of calcium and other nutrients that just aren’t preserved in the store bought stuff.

This is about the best, most foolproof stock recipe I’ve found. It starts on the stove and then finishes in the Crock Pot, so it’s absolutely maintenance free after the first half hour. And it will get every last drop of vitality out of your chicken and into the stock (and then into your sister!) The only thing I change is to add a splash of vinegar at the beginning, which helps break down even more calcium out of the bones, but you won’t taste it at the end.

Either make the noodles right before adding them to the soup, or if you want to cook a bunch and set it aside, wash them well with cold water before putting them away. The cold water keeps them from turning into a big ole ball of noodles.

What goes without saying when ranting about a restaurant is that…


Wow, you get fancy with your chicken stock! :wink: I basically save all the non-edible bits of stuff (celery tops, onion peels, tops and bottoms of carrots that get cut off before eating, etc.) in the freezer as I use the vegetables and then once a week I go through the crisper and anything that is close to going bad gets cut up and tossed in with the frozen stuff. Once I have lots of vegetable bits in the freezer I cook a whole chicken and use the bones from the carcass plus the wings with the skin and meat left on and either put it all in a slow cooker or on the stove top for 4 or 5 hours with about 6 cups of water. It is super tasty and I use it for all sorts of stuff. I’m actually thawing some out right now as a base for my baked potato soup tonight!

Thanks for the advice! :slight_smile:

Yeah, that’s pretty much my method, too. Only difference is that it’s started on the stove so I can skim off the protein foam that forms for the first 15 minutes. It’s not required, but it keeps the stock from being cloudy. Of course, it’s an aesthetic choice, not a taste one, so you can skip it and just chuck everything into a Crock Pot from the start.

I love the Crock Pot because it keeps it at the perfect low simmer and I can start it before bed and let it go all night. Boil stock and it gets icky, IMHO. I want low and slow to break down all that collagen and minerals to get perfect stock that makes a rich gelatinous blob when refrigerated! (We had a thread about a year back that started “My chicken stock turned to jello, what happened?!” and we all replied, “You got it right!” :smiley: )

From my favorite sister:

Strip the meat off the Rotisserie chick & chop or shred it to bite sized pieces.

In your pressure cooker, sauté chopped onions, celery & carrots.

Add chicken carcass & a carton of chicken stock (or water). Season w/salt & pepper

Bring to pressure & cook for 10 minutes or so.

Reduce pressure & remove the carcass.

Add chicken, noodles or rice,

Cook until the carbs are done.

Stir in chopped fresh parsley

If you want this to be a chicken tortilla soup, you can omit the carrots, add a can of rotel tomatoes, cumin or taco seasoning & a bag of frozen southwestern vegetables.

Top with tortilla chips, sour cream & chopped avocado

The recipe sounds fine, especially if I started with WhyNot’s ace chicken stock recipe. However, I have a feeling if I turned it into chicken tortilla soup, my sister would soon be looking for a different sister to live with! :slight_smile: