Chicken Noodle Soup’s STAR Ingredient: Star Anise!

I don’t think I ever made chicken noodle soup until I was married. At that point, I cracked open the Mennonite Treasury recipe book that my Grandma Koop had given me at a bridal shower. And there I found the requirement — must add star anise. I thought that was weird and called my mom to ask her about it. She told me that yes OF COURSE you must put star anise into your chicken soup! It won’t taste right if you don’t.

I asked her if she had ever put star anise into HER chicken noodle soup. Again, OF COURSE she did. She always used star anise! And if I wanted my soup to even stand a chance of being any good, I too must follow suit.

Well, I’ll tell you what. This explains why there’s all that star anise available at Main Bread & Butter (otherwise known as the Steinbach Mennonite Food Store, in my mind). So I trotted down to the store, purchased a little bundle of star anise, and have been faithfully stocking my cabinet with the ingredient ever since.

Except, I don’t totally follow the recipe. I figure if a little is good, a lot is better! So I throw in four entire stars. I love the aroma it produces!

I recently made chicken noodle soup… figured I’d show you the finished product!

Confession: I’m not very good in the kitchen. You’ll notice there is a lack of broth here. Perhaps I overshot it on the noodles. My ratio seems way off. But, I’m working with a new oven, so perhaps I get some grace from that. Not sure. Also, a second confession: I did not make the noodles myself. Perhaps that’s obvious by now. I bought them from Main B&B. They were made in yantzied. YUM!