Monday, January 12, 2015

Chicken Soup with Crème Fraîche and Capellini

Suffering from a diabolical head cold for over a week, my husband took pity on me and prepared a homemade chicken stock, from which he created a thick and delicious Chicken Soup with Crème Fraîche, Madeira and Capellini Pasta from a cookbook he gave me as a gift a few years ago — 'La Cuisine: Everyday French Home Cooking' by Françoise Bernard. A culinary bible featuring 1,000 recipes from the legendary woman who revolutionized French cooking by simplifying recipes for the home cook, this cookbook is a thick 3-inch tome chocked full of easy and delicious recipes. Beginning in the 1960s, Bernard revolutionized French cooking by writing cookbooks aimed at the 'modern woman'. Until that time, the only cookbooks available were full of fussy recipes handed down by the grand chefs of the past. Bernard set out to make classic dishes accessible to everyone, paring down to a recipe’s true essence. She continued to publish and teach, building her forty-year career on the principle that good food can be simple, easy, and economical. This grand volume is the culmination of her work, a collection of the best, most tried-and-true recipes, like her soul satisfying Chicken Soup with Crème Fraîche, Madeira and Capellini Pasta which has just 5 ingredients and takes just a little over 5 minutes to make — Mon Dieu!

La Cuisine: Everyday French Home Cooking by Françoise Bernard

Françoise Bernard is the grande dame of French popular cuisine

Homemade chicken stock

Crème fraîche and shredded roast chicken are added to the soup

Angel Hair pasta and Madeira are then added and cooked for 2 minutes

Chicken Soup with Angel Hair Pasta
Serves 4
Recipe adapted from Françoise Bernard

5 cups chicken broth
3/4 lb skinless, boneless chicken breast
1/2 cup crème fraîche
4 oz Angel Hair or Capellini pasta
1/3 cup Madeira

In a large saucepan, bring the chicken broth to a boil over medium-high heat. Add the chicken and crème fraîche, reduce the heat to low, and simmer for 3 minutes. Add the pasta and cook, while stirring, for 2 minutes. Stir in the Madeira and pour the soup into a tureen or individual soup bowls.

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