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Golden Chicken, Corn, and Noodle Soup with Saffron

I made this for a friend and I must agree with his statement. It’s really that good.

The fresh sweet corn takes this soup to another level entirely‚Ķ but you must follow the process and “milk” your corn. Take the back of a knife and scrape out all of the juice and bits from the cob. The corn milk is sweet and adds a ton of flavor.

The flavors are fairly simple so a great quality chicken stock is the best. I had the time so I made homemade chicken stock but if you don’t have time then I suggest Kitchen Basics chicken stock (the VERY best store-bought stock).

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 Tbs. olive oil
  • 2 large ribs celery, finely diced
  • 3 medium carrots, cut in half and into 1/4 inch pieces
  • 1 medium onion, finely diced
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 pinch saffron threads
  • 1/2 tsp. dried thyme
  • 2 qt. homemade or low-salt chicken broth
  • 3 cups shredded cooked chicken (I use baked chicken breasts)
  • 1/2 pound Ditalini or any small pasta, cooked al dente
  • 4 ears fresh corn, kernels removed and cobs “milked”
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 3 Tbs. fresh lemon juice; more to taste
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

DIRECTIONS

Tip: The pasta is cooked separately to keep the starch from the pasta from clouding the soup broth, and the pasta would also suck up too much of the soup broth as it cooked. Boiling the pasta separately solves both of these problems.

To prepare the corn: Cut the kernels from the cob. Take the back of your knife and run the knife down the cob, scraping all the juice and bits out of the corn.

Bring a medium saucepan of well-salted water to a boil over high heat. Meanwhile, heat the oil in a large soup pot over medium heat. Add the celery, onion, carrot, garlic, saffron, and thyme. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables start to soften, 5 to 6 minutes. Add the broth and corn and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat to a simmer and cook for 15-20 minutes until corn is cooked through and vegetables are tender.

While the soup simmers, cook the pasta in the boiling salted water until al dente, 7-8 minutes. Drain.

Add the drained pasta, chicken and parsley to the soup and cook for about 5 minutes until chicken is warmed through. Stir in the lemon juice and season to taste with salt, pepper, and more lemon juice, if needed.

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