Polish Chicken Soup


Chicken soup is one of the essential dishes of Polish cuisine- it is common in every Polish household and made in many different ways. Until recently, I thought that chicken soup cannot be made without adding boullion cubes- othewise it would be tasteless and too plain. 



What made me change my mind? The awareness of the ingredients of the boullion cubes. Do you know that these additives contain monosodium glutamate? The main role of this chemical substance is enhancing the regular taste of the food you are eating so that it will be tasty even though it is plain in reality. The research shows that monosodium glutamate is addictive and and it increases your hunger leading to eating more, and in consequence contributing to obesity. 
It is considered to be a safe substance when eaten in small quantities. Unfortunately, nowadays it is added to many food items such as sausages, cold cuts, ready-made sauces in glass containers and in powder, powdered soups, fish and meat preservatives, crisps and many others. Too high intake of monosodium glutamate causes less seroius problems such as dizziness and indigestion but there are also more serious consequences i.e. obesity or nervous and hormonal system inbalance. I encourage you to read about monosodium glutamate and find out more obout it. You decide if you still want to use it in your cooking.
Coming back to the chicken soup, today- my mum's recipe for the traditional Polish chicken soup without chemical additives:)
I recommend it especially for these cold day- it will keep you warm and for those of you who have a cold. 
Tastes best with the DIY egg noodles.





Ingredients:

- 1 free-range chciken
- 300 g of beef
- 2-3 carrots
- 2 root parsley
- 1 leek
- a quarter of a celery root
- 1 onion
- 2 cloves of garlic
- 3 pieces of all spice
- 3 bay leaves
- salt and pepper
- freshly chopped parsley leaves for garnishing

Clean the beef, cut the chicken into pieces (use the main body, wings, legs but not the breasts- they are too dry, save them for the second course) and put together with peeled vegetables (carrots, root parsley, leek, celery, onion and garlic), all spice and bay leaves in a large pot. Fill the pot with cold water and cook until it starts boiling.
One of the main rules to bear in mind is that the chicken soup should not actually boil- otherwise it won't be clear. Once it starts boiling, turn the heat down and ONLY simmer. Slightly cover with a lid and continiue simmering for another 1,5- 2 hours. At the end add some pepper and salt to the taste. I do not recommend using any kind of boullion cubes or powders.  
Serve the chicken soup with noodles, pieces of the chicken meat, chopped or sliced carrots and finely chopped parsley leaves.