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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
  • 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.
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