Channeling Grandma: Egg Noodles in Chicken Broth

Perhaps it was rationalization.  Grandma had shown me how to make her homemade egg noodles many times.  And we (myself, siblings &  cousins) were all experienced in her rolling technique after years of unfurling noodle pinwheels into long streamers and spreading them to dry over linen towels (see recipe below).

But I didn’t remember the ingredient ratios.  And the internet was a shadow of its current self back in 1990 when she passed away.  So when I discovered Mrs Kluski’s noodles, dried, packaged and waiting at better grocers, Grandma’s noodles might have disappeared forever.

But poverty and sentimentality got the better of me.

As I have previously mentioned I resigned a lucrative corporate position in 2009, recognizing the futility of juggling conflicts between a demanding position and a dying father’s medical crises.  For our 2010 Christmas Eve (just after the anniversary of my father’s death), I wanted to reprise my Grandmother’s noodles, but now balked at the $4/bag price of store-bought.  We can eat a lot of noodles when we all get together.  And while the commercial noodles were good, they were just not the same.

And so, I set the goal of resurrecting the old family recipe.  I went out to the internet and found a surprising consistency in the ingredients for egg noodles.  In the end I went with the following:

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Egg Noodles in Chicken Broth

Ingredients

  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 quart rich chicken broth, preferably homemade from free-range roasting or stewing chicken (see No Brainer Chicken Broth)
  • 4 oz added chicken fat for richness (optional)
  • 1 T salt (or to taste)

Directions

      In a large bowl, stir together the flour and pinch of salt. Add the beaten egg, milk, and butter. Mix until mostly blended, then drop mixture onto floured surface.  Finish blending by hand, then knead until smooth, about 5 minutes.
Egg Noodle Dough

Egg Noodle Dough

  • On a floured surface, roll out to 1/8 or 1/4 inch thickness. When done, flour both sides of the dough lightly so it isn’t sticky.
Rolled Egg Noodle Dough

Rolled Egg Noodle Dough

  • Starting on one end, roll up the dough into a long cylinder.
Egg Noodle Roll

Egg Noodle Roll

  • Cut “wheels” all the way down the length of the cylinder.
Cutting Egg Noodles

Cutting Egg Noodles

  • Unroll the “wheels” and allow noodles to air dry before cooking (at least 15 minutes).
Noodles Drying

Noodles Drying

  • Heat broth, salt and chicken fat in a large pot and add noodles when boiling.  Cook until done, approximately 5 minutes.

I made a small batch as a test and cooked them up in some rich turkey broth leftover from Thanksgiving. When they were done, we all dug in and one-by-one, heads popped up amazed.

Our youngest (my beet cake hater), declined, wrinkling up her nose and claiming, “I never eat those.”   When my husband convinced her to try one out of his bowl, her eyes grew wide and she snatched the dish out of his hands.  “These are better; they’re chew-y”

On Christmas Eve, I made a double batch to the delight of my extended family.  After Christmas I made a half batch to add to chicken noodle soup.  “New” recipe, three batches in two weeks.  I believe we have a hit.

Perhaps I should look for Grandma’s gingerbread recipe.

9 thoughts on “Channeling Grandma: Egg Noodles in Chicken Broth

  1. Mary

    need to make a lot of noodles for the veterans of foreign wars club. So need to know how much of each ingredient for 40-50 people

    1. Inger Wilkerson

      Wow sounds like a big (and wonderful) project. Amounts would depend on what else you are serving, but you might need 4-5 times the amounts listed here. If you do go that large, I would recommend doing it in more than one batch. You may wish to consider trying a single batch as a trial run–you’ll get peace of mind and an early treat yourself!

    1. Inger Wilkerson

      I am so happy to be able to help here. I think it is truly sad to lose a family recipe (as we have as well…).

      1. irene gillan

        what a nice surprise to hear from you….thank you ……i am a depression baby of 1931 and both my parents are from the province of quebec,canada. my mother’s mother was a canadian also and my mother watch her make chicken with homemade noodles.it is such a tasty recipe and i remember in the late 40’s after the big depression. the recipe is just the way my mother made it

        1. Inger Wilkerson

          My parents were born in 1930 and my grandmother made this, so the timeframe is just the same. I don’t think there is anything available that is quite like this. The whole family was happy when I revived the recipe. Hope you enjoy it!

  2. Cindy Reynolds

    my Grandpa liked his noodles smaller…so from the strip stage….Grandma would take the scissors and cut them up small….they were so good!!! I always throw in real butter when cooking them also…instead of the chicken fat…makes them just a touch on the creamy side! while they were drying…I always snuck some and ate them…yes…raw…it was good but Grandma would say if you keep eating them there ain’t gonna be any to cook!!! lol!! I am thinking she sometimes only used the yolks also…I watched her do it a million times….wish I had wrote it all down now!!!

    1. Inger Post author

      I have actually tossed in some butter myself sometimes when I didn’t feel I had enough chicken fat, Cindy! Thanks so much for sharing! I love hearing other peoples traditions!

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