It was a busy exercise day (30 minutes on elliptical, lifting weights and an hour and ten minute walk with Nick), as well as laundry and cooking, so I thought I’d just make it quick tonight and post the recipe for our dinner. I’m exhausted! Yet another recipe from “The Food You Crave” by Ellie Krieger (last one this week), this one is another tried and true recipe, and one that I crave now. Lemon Chicken Soup with Orzo. It’s like an upscale version of chicken noodle soup, and last time I was sick, I suckered Nick into making this soup.

For Easier Printing
Microsoft Word Version: Lemon Chicken Soup with Orzo Document
PDF Version: Lemon Chicken Soup with Orzo PDF

Here’s the cast of characters:
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Ingredients

  • 4 teaspoons olive oil
  • 8 ounces skinless, boneless chicken breast halves, cut into small chunks
    *note* Tonight, I used pre-cooked chicken from Trader Joe’s (“Just Chicken”) just to speed things up, but I usually use regular ol’ chicken breasts.
  • Pinch of salt, plus more to taste
  • 1 medium onion, diced (about 1 ½ cups)
  • 2 stalks celery, diced (about ½ cup)
  • 1 medium carrot, diced (about ½ cup)
  • 2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme or ½ teaspoon dried
  • 6 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 cup orzo, preferably whole-wheat
  • 2 large eggs
  • 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • Freshly ground black pepper to taste

Instructions
Heat 2 teaspoons of the oil in a soup pot over medium-high heat. Season the chicken with the salt, add it to the pot, and cook, stirring, a few times, until just cooked through, about 5 minutes. Transfer the chicken to a dish and set aside.

Add the remaining 2 teaspoons oil to the pot. Add the onion, celery, carrot, and thyme and cook, stirring, over medium-high heat until the vegetables are tender, about 5 minutes. Add 5 cups of the broth and bring to a boil. Add the orzo and let simmer until tender, about 8 minutes. Turn the heat down to low to keep the soup hot but not boiling.

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Warm the remaining 1 cup broth in a small saucepan until it is hot but not boiling. In a medium bowl, beat the eggs. Gradually whisk the lemon juice into the eggs. Then gradually add the hot broth to the egg-lemon mixture, whisking all the while. Add the mixture to the soup, stirring well until the soup is thickened. Do not let the soup come to a boil. Add the cooked chicken to the soup. Season with salt and pepper and serve.

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And there you have it!

Try this soup, you will not regret it. There are only three alterations that I make to this recipe and they are:

  • If your bunch of celery has any leaves, use them! Wash them, give them a rough chop, and then throw them in the pot with the rest of the mirepoix. It lends a terrific flavor to the soup.
  • Each time I’ve made the recipe, I don’t seem to have any dried thyme. Instead, I just use Italian Seasoning. I figured that Italian Seasoning has thyme in it, and I think the soup tastes great with Italian Seasoning.
  • I sometimes like it to be a little more lemon-y, so if, after adding the lemon-egg-broth mixture to the soup, it’s not tangy enough, I will sometimes add more lemon juice. Tonight, I added at least a tablespoon more. Yum.

Now, I’m off to have a quick soak in the bathtub, and then have a good night’s sleep.
Tomorrow, we will hear from Nick!

‘Night, all!

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