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By The English Kitchen
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Chicken & Orzo Soup

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Still no working stove.  It turns out that the problem is not with the stove, but with the electrics in the house, so we are now waiting on the landlord to pull his finger out. He’s usually pretty good so no worries.  In the meantime we have the trusty hot plate.

Today I made us a delicious and hearty Chicken & Orzo Soup.  It was also very simple to make.

You will need leeks and celery.  One leek, and one stalk.  Make sure you clean your leek really well.  There is nothing worse than sand in your food. They are really easy to clean.  Just cut  slit down one side of the leek and then fan it open slightly, running cold water over it.  Any sand should just rinse away.

After that you can just cut it into half moons or coins.  I always trim my celery also.  I use  a sharp knife to pull away any of the strings.  Strings can be a bit unpleasant depending on the age of your celery. I don’t bother with the tender inner stalks, but sometimes the outer stalks can be really stringy, so those are the ones I de-string!  This gets chopped.

The prepped veg is then softened in a bit of Olive oil.  Not so that it browns . . .  just so it is soft.  

I use gel stock pots and boiling water for my chicken stock.  This took 4 gel pots.  If you have chicken stock in the freeze or cans. Just use that.  Bring it to the boil then throw in some boneless chicken thighs.

Cook these until tender and no longer pink and scoop them out with a slotted spoon.  You will cut or shred these to add at the end, in the meantime you bring the stock back up to the boil and add your orzo and your secret ingredient.

Secret ingredient?  Yes!  Its dried dill weed. You could also use fresh chopped dill weed. I just used the dry today as that is all I had. Its just enough to add a layer of flavour that is very pleasant and have people smacking their lips.  Don’t worry, it won’t taste overly like dill. Trust me on this.

Once the orzo is cooked you shred/cut the chicken up and put it back into the soup . . .

Heat through, adjust the seasoning, and then ladle into heated bowls for your very lucky family.  I like crackers with mine, Todd likes bread. You can serve lemon wedges with it to squeeze over the soup.  I forgot.  Bad me.  The hint of lemon is a real flavour booster!

Yield: 4

Chicken & Orzo Soup

prep time: 5 minscook time: 35 minstotal time: 40 mins
Simple, delicious and filling.  I like mine with crisp crackers.  Todd, he likes bread. Everybody is happy.

  • 1 TBS olive oil
  • 1 fresh leek, halved, lengthwise, cleaned and sliced into 1/2 inch pieces
  • 1 stalk celery, trimmed and chopped
  • 3/4 pound boneless, skinless chicken thighs
  • 1 1/2 litre chicken stock (6 cups)
  • salt and black pepper to taste
  • 105g orzo pasta (1/2 cup)
  • 1 TBS dried dill weed
  • Lemon wedges to serve (optional)

  1. Heat the oil over medium heat in a large saucepan.  Add the leeks and celery, Cook stirring occasionally, over medium low until softened without browning, about 5 to 8 minutes.  Add the chicken and stock.  Bring to the boil, then reduce to a simmer and cook for a further 15 to 20 minutes until the chicken is cooked through and tender, no longer pink.  Remove with a slotted spoon and set aside.  Bring the broth in the pot to the boil, add the dill and orzo.  Cook until tender, about 8 minutes (or however long it says on your package of orzo.)  Cut the chicken into cubes, or shred it and return it to the pot.  Taste and adjust seasoning with salt and pepper. Heat through.  Ladle into heated bowls and  serve with lemon wedges for squeezing. (optional)  Delicious!

I hope it isn’t too long before our stove is up and working again.  I am wanting to bake something!  I have seen some lovely breads about and I am wanting to try sourdough again.  In the meantime,we are enjoying things like this tasty soup.  Bon appetit! 

Debunking the myths of English Cookery, one recipe at a time.
The English Kitchen

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