There is something womb like about hot ladled chicken broth and when you add free range eggs, lemon juice and rice, it wraps you in its arms with the gentlest of hugs. Here’s how to get your soup to hug you.
Note: Due to my swallow difficulties I have added the cooked minced chicken meat back into the soup to make the experience into a full meal. It sounds crazy but I also eat it with a Chinese ceramic spoon as it seems to just feel better in my mouth and places the focus on the soup not the spoon.
The spoon may not work for you depending on your trismus but try different varieties – you will find one that works for you. 😉
I have adapted this recipe to be prepared in a pressure cooker and don’t dismiss pressure cooker cooking. Quick, easy and often provides just the right consistency. Pressure cooker tips here
Greek Avgolemono Chicken Soup
1 whole chicken- 1.5kg
(I get a large free run chicken from my butcher and have him cut it in half and use half a chicken and freeze the other half for a later soup or stock)
3 brown onions- peeled and roughly chopped
2 bay leaves
4-6 pepper corns
4 cloves fresh garlic
½ cup uncooked rice
3 eggs beaten (use freerange)
2 lemons juiced
Salt and pepper to taste ( I use Himalayan salt)
I like to use my pressure cooker or you can simply use a large stock pot.
You can see tips on using a stock pot here Pressure Cooker
Using a pressure cooker I make the chicken stock by using half a chicken, add 3 brown onions roughly chopped, 2 bay leaves and 4-6 pepper corns and 4 cloves of garlic. You can make this soup with a quality store bought chicken stock but I like to use and make my own stock with the chicken because then you can pull the meat off the carcass and add it to the soup base.
Put the chicken in a pot large enough for it to move around a bit not too large as the stock produced will be too watery) I always add onion to flavor and strain the soup after 45 minutes to an hour of simmering. Skim any impurities from the top of the stock whilst it’s simmering.
When the chicken is done the meat should pull away from the bone easily. About 30 – 60 minutes in a pressure cooker longer on the stove top (1 – 1.5 hours)
Transfer the bird to a large bowl or plate and allow to cool. Strain the stock. Place back in the pot it was cooked in. Add the rice and season to taste. Simmer the broth until the rice is tender about 20 minutes.
Whisk the eggs with the lemon juice in a medium size bowl. When the rice is done turn off the heat. Whisk one ladle of hot broth into the eggs slowly so that the eggs don’t curdle. Gradually whisk in more broth until the egg mixture is heated. Then pour the egg mixture back into the pot , whisking briskly.
The result should be a creamy cloudy looking soup. You may season with additional salt pepper or lemon juice.
You may add pieces of chicken to the soup before serving. I vitamised the cooked chicken meat to a puree then added it back into the broth.
This is a meal in itself and very comforting when you are not feeling well.