Let us start by addressing the elephant in the room, you probably think this sounds like a bizarrely weird food combination, right? I promise it super tasty! And I don’t just say that because I love the sweet creaminess of peanut butter either! I would …
Does Anyone else wake up LITERALLY thinking about food? Like not just OMG I want coffee and bacon ASAP….But like can I do X recipe with Y substitution and save $ without sacrificing taste or quality? Well, that is exactly how this beef experiment came …
As much as I dislike like the cold, this is the BEST season for warming yourself up with a yummy bowl of soup, and boy, do I have a yummy and SIMPLE recipe for you today! I ‘cheat’ making some chicken noodle soup by using store bought gyoza in place of the chicken and noodles! Plus, it is only seven ingredients total! Take a look:
Did that video make your mouth drool (or was it just me 😂 )
Of course, just like all great soups, we want to start with our mise en place with our mirepoix. These are probably two of the three french terms I know (the other being bonjour). Mise en place is basically the fancy term used for getting all your ingredients prepped/washed/cut/ready for cooking. Taking the time to prepare for cooking is going to be the number one tip I can give to make any recipe go more smoothly once you start cooking. Mirepoix is the fun French word for using equal ish amounts of chopped sauteed veggies…usually onion, celery, and carrots.
Personally, I include garlic in my definition of mirepoix because garlic = yum!! But, I add it after the other veggies have cooked a bit first. Also, being that this soup is so simple to make, I like to cut the veggies into some pretty shapes. I slice the celery (including the leafy bits) on a diagonal into bite size pieces and cut the baby carrots into triangles (also known as an oblique cut–see 03:52 in video). I love using baby carrots because I feel like I am cheating with their prep too since they are already washed and peeled!
Onions…I honestly use white and yellow onions in soup interchangeably…I usually pick based on what I have handy at home which is often determined by if white or yellow onions were on sale at the store. I am sure you already can cut an onion, BUT if you would like to see my tip of how to cut an onion quickly and easily (and hopefully cut down on the chance of your eyes tearing up!) see about 01:45 into the video–if I tried to write that without the visual it would be a paragraph of gibberish gobbledygook!
Cooking the veggies is super simple. Turn your stove to medium and use a heavy pot with a lid. Add the mirepoix (onions/celery/carrots) all at once with a sprinkle of salt and cover. This is ‘sweating’ the veggies. The goal is to soften them evenly and let them release some of their liquids naturally (hence the term sweating). Salt helps drawl the moisture out too, but you do not need much! I give mine a stir after 3-4 minutes then again after another 4 ish minutes. Some color is OK but we do not have a specific goal to brown the veggies.
Once the veggies are softened, you will ideally add the garlic and stir in (I temporally forgot and added this with the broth–😬 ). The garlic really only needs about 30-60 seconds to cook, and you will know it is cooked when the garlicly aroma hits you 🤤 You will miss it if you dont add it!
Chicken Stock–one ingredient that can really SHINE and make this dish. In theme with ‘cheating’ on this recipe, I was feeling lazy and did not pre thaw/warm the broth. Adding it frozen probably just slows the cooking time a few minutes overall, but again, I cannot stress how easy and fast this soup is, so the frozen stock will not really slow you down with serving dinner. If you don’t mind doing an extra dish though feel free to warm the stock separately!
I really cannot tell you enough about how much I love using my homemade stock.It is one of my favorite pantry MUST HAVEs which basically means I try to always have two or three quarts in my freezer at all times. I use it in almost all of my broth based soups and especially with my Easy Weeknight Ramen! Please check out my Homemade Chicken Stock recipe here!
The Pork Gyoza I used is not anything fancy. You can add it as soon as the broth is warm and lightly simmering. I used about two thirds of a bag (I think I counted 14 or 15 dumplings?) and added it from frozen–should only take 5-6 minutes to cook thru completely. My gyoza came from Trader Joes. I love keeping these in the freezer for a quick app and a bag only cost $2.99! It’s like a double win! Sometimes I use dumplings from the CAM International Market (it is a specialty Grocery store here in Cincinnati), but I haven’t been there recently. I think the gyoza from the CAM is imported and a little more onion-y in flavor.
Another note on the Pork Gyoza…I am using these with chicken stock. This does not bother me at all! If you would rather not mix meats or would prefer to skip the pork completely, just look for a chicken gyoza or chicken dumpling in your supermarket! I just noticed Trader Joes even sells a Chicken Gyoza the other day–I think I automatically look for the blue package and always grab the Pork ones 🙂
Somehow in these frigid temperatures and multiple dustings of snow, my green onions still seem to be thriving??? I originally planted them spring 2019 and they survived last winter too and made a BIG comeback for 2020. Here’s to hoping the same for 2021 because I really enjoy having these a foot outside my back door 😋 Today gave them a super quick chop and I use them as a topper since the gyoza gives this soup a bit of an asian inspired flair.
By now, I am sure you can see why I call this a Cheating Chicken Noodle Soup. I cheat on carrot prep by using baby carrots. I cheat on dishes by not warming the stock separate from the cooking pot. I cheat on needing noodles and leftover chicken by using the meat filled gyoza! In my opinion these shortcuts give you a great mostly homemade soup with a super easy to remember recipe!
Please share how this turned out for you and subscribe to have future recipes delivered straight to your inbox! Please dish up and enjoy!
Cheating Chicken Noodle Soup
- Pork Gyoza/Dumplings (or Chicken Gyoza/Dumplings)
- I used 14 or 15 gyoza which was about 2/3 of a bag from Trader Joes
- 1 Quart Chicken Stock (I recommend homemade!)
- 1/2 Onion, Diced
- Baby Carrots, about 1/2 bag (or 6-8 ounces)
- I cut into triangles (oblique cut)
- Celery including the leafy bits from the center, guestimate the amount needed to equal volume of carrots and onion
- Garlic, crushed with garlic press, I used 3 BIG cloves so you might want 5 if small
- cut green onion to garnish
- Pork Gyoza/Dumplings (or Chicken Gyoza/Dumplings)
- Mise En Place! Gather/Wash/Prepare all of the ingredients to get ready to cook!
- Using a heavy pot with lid and heat on medium add cut onion/carrots/celery/pinch of salt and sweat the veggies until soft, stir occasionally.
- Add garlic, stir, and cook until fragrant ~ 30-60 seconds
- Add Chicken Stock, I added mine frozen (homemade recipe here) but you can use pre-warmed homemade stock or store bought broth also
- Once broth is warmed, add your choice of store bought Gyoza/Dumplings. I used 14-15 frozen Pork Gyoza (it was about 2/3 of a 16 ounce bag). Pork or Chicken will both be yummy!
- Allow soup a few minutes to warm and flavors to mingle about five ish minutes after adding gyoza/dumplings
- Dish up a bowl and top with Green Onions
Could it really be that easy, to pour a quart of your favorite store bought chocolate milk directly into an ice cream machine?
In preparation, I actually spent a LOT of time thinking about this video and how to compare chocolate milk against a chocolate ice cream custard for you in a straightforward and clear fashion. I initially considered making the batches two days in a row and splicing the video together. I considered many recipes for the chocolate ice creams–including adding an egg to the chocolate milk and cooking it similar to a custard (I decided that wouldn’t be the truest test of my question).
I also somewhat impulsively bought a second ice cream maker for $20 on Facebook Marketplace a day before beginning this video!
Hear me out! I had good reason! With the basic/inexpensive ice cream makers I have, I am essentially limited to one opportunity to churn a batch every 24 to 30 ish hours (the ice cream bowl needs lots of time to re freeze after cleaning). I also wasn’t sure with the ambient lighting in my kitchen how the comparisons might be impacted by being churned different days.
Also not important reason at all: dueling ice cream makers sounded fun!
I will not posting the chocolate (custard) ice cream recipe today 🙁 as this was literally the first time I made chocolate ice cream. I would rather try a few alternatives to make sure I give you the VERY best recipe when I do! 🙂
Without giving away too much from the video, Here is my pre experiment prediction: The Chocolate milk will make a Wendy’s style Frosty just fine, but will not harden appropriately in the freezer to become a delicious scoop-able ice cream due to a lower fat percentage when compared to a typical custard based ice cream. Let us find out if I predicted correctly!
I hope you stuck with me to the very end to see what happened! Please sign up for my email subscription so you can be among the first to know about my new posts and comment below to let me know what questions you have for me!