1 chicken (cut into sections). Some people prefer to use 6 large pieces of skinless thighs
12 cups of water
½ tbsp of salt and 1 chicken bouillon
3 garlic cloves (crushed)
2 tsp of tomato paste
About 1 tbsp of parsley flakes
1 onion (chopped)
1 bay leaf
¼ teaspoon of saffron or traditional bijol
Fine soup noodles or curly vermicelli (about 1 ½ handful-crushed into medium pieces)
1 large potato (optional)
1 medium carrot (optional)
1 lemon cut in quarters
Clean, trim, and cut up chicken into pieces, (remove skin). Place chicken into a large 8 quart pot with the 12 cups of cold water and bring to a boil. Cover pot and reduce heat. Simmer for about 20 to 30 mins. Skim off any foam and froth.
Chop garlic, onion (into very small pieces) and add them together with the tomato paste, bay leaf, saffron, parsley flakes, salt and chicken bouillon. Reduce heat and continue simmering until chicken becomes tender enough that it comes easily out of the bone (about 1 to 1 ¼ hours). Chop potatoes and carrots into small (bite sized) and add them to the pot on the last 15 to 20 minutes.
Cautiously remove chicken from pot and place it into a large bowl. (Immediately after doing this, add noodles and cook according to package instructions). Meantime, using a cutting board, separate the meat from the bone (if desired). Use caution, since it will be very hot (you can do this with two forks-preferably). You can add all the small deboned pieces of chicken back to the pot, if you prefer to have a more consistent soup with more meat, and if the entire content will be consumed, or, you can add about 3 tbsp of chicken per serving, the rest can be used to prepare a different meal, or, If you think you’ll have left over and wish to consume more soup later on or on the next day, store the unused portions of chicken in the refrigerator. You can add them to the soup on the next day and heat them together.
When serving, add the lemon quarters on the side and squeeze over the soup according to personal taste.
Serving: About 6 to 8 generous servings.