MAKES 8 quarts
Timing: 1 ½ hours
A delicious and velvety chicken soup, perfect for a chilly day!
1 – 3 to 3 ½ lb broiler chicken, cleaned and any giblets or kidneys discarded
1 medium yellow onion, trimmed and halved
3 medium sized carrots, peeled and left whole
3 stalks of celery, cut into 6 pieces
3 tsp sea salt, divided
2 cups white long grain rice
2 tsp olive oil
2 tbsp low sodium chicken base or bouillon
6 large egg yolks
1 cup lemon juice (or 4 to 5 lemons)
4 tbsp cornstarch
1 tsp white pepper
Fresh parsley, to garnish
For the Chicken, Vegetables, and Broth:
1. Place the chicken, onion, carrots, celery, and 1 tsp of salt in a large soup pot (7 ¼ qts or larger in size). Add water to pot to fully cover the chicken by two inches (about 12 cups).
2. Bring pot to a boil, and once at a boil skim any fat or foam from the surface. Reduce to medium heat and cover for 45 minutes to an hour. Your chicken should be fully cooked and starting to fall apart.
3. Once your chicken is fully cooked, remove chicken and vegetables from the pot and set aside to cool. Discard the onion. Keep broth at a simmer.
4. Prepare the chicken and vegetables. Carefully chop carrot and celery into ½’’ pieces. Remove all meat from the bones of your chicken and chop into ½’’ pieces. Discard any skin.
For the Rice:
1. While your chicken is cooking, cook your rice. In a 6 qt saucepan, add 6 cups of water and bring to a boil. Once your water is boiling stir in 2 cups rice, 1 tsp salt, and 2 tsp olive oil. Reduce to low heat and cover to cook. The rice should be fully cooked after 30 to 35 minutes, or once all of the water is absorbed. Set aside.
For the Avgolemono Soup:
1. Whisk the chicken base into 8 cups of warm water until combined. Reserve.
2. In a small bowl, using an electric hand mixer set on medium speed, whisk together lemon juice and egg yolks until fully combined and slightly frothy, about 1 to 2 minutes. Reserve.
3. In a small bowl, whisk together 1 cup of cold water with cornstarch to create a slurry.
4. Once your slurry is made, slowly add and whisk into the pot with your broth. This will help to create a velvety texture.
5. Add the prepared chicken base broth, 2 tsp salt, white pepper and cornstarch slurry to the pot with the simmering broth, and continue to simmer on low for 5 minutes. Remove and reserve 4 cups of broth from the pot. Remove the large pot from the heat.
6. Slowly add a little of the reserved warm broth to the yolk and lemon mixture. Whisk quickly, add more broth, and whisk again until all 4 cups of broth is incorporated. Make sure to continuously whisk to ensure that the eggs are fully tempered.
7. Gradually add egg mixture back into the pot. Once mixture is fully incorporated, strain the broth carefully into a separate pot.
8. Add the chopped vegetables, chicken, and rice to the soup. Taste and add additional salt, pepper, and lemon if needed.