2 to 3 pounds chicken parts
2 medium onions, peeled and quartered
4 to 6 large carrots, peeled and sliced
2 large garlic cloves, crushed
½ bunch parsley, washed well
2 or 3 stalks celery, washed well and quartered
2 fresh bay leaves or 1 dried
6 to 8 whole black peppercorns
Half a large dried ancho pepper (I truly believe this is the secret ingredient!)
3 to 5 quarts water (depending on the size of your soup pot)
Ample salt to taste (at least 3 to 4 tablespoons to start)
Wash the chicken well and place in your soup pot. You may remove the skin to reduce the fat level.
Add the remaining ingredients and fill with water to cover by 2 inches. Cover the pot, set over medium-high heat, and bring to a boil; then reduce to a simmer and cook loosely covered for 2 hours or so. (As the soup simmers, you may want to skim off any impurities from the top.)
When the broth is rich in color (and taste), remove the pot from heat.
You can remove the solids from the soup with a slotted spoon, or strain the soup through a colander into a separate pot. Add the carrots and chicken meat (removed from its bones and cut up) back to the strained soup.
If you have tiny noodles on hand, you can add those to your soup as well, but don’t overdo it or the pasta will absorb too much of the liquid.
Serve with crusty garlic bread.