How to make chicken soup – recipe | Food

I’m happy to say that soup season is upon us once again, and by that I mean a proper soup, rather than the deliciously refreshing runny salads of summer, the kind that warms every cockle from the inside out. And it doesn’t get much more roasted than the classic chicken variety: simple, yet unfeasibly sustainable, and as clean and light as it is satisfying. No freezer should be without it.

Homework 10 minutes
Cook 2½ hours
It serves 6

1 kg of chicken wings or thighs (or a mix), plus a leftover chicken carcass, if you have one
2 sticks celery
2 onions
3 leeks
3 carrots
1 small bunch of parsleyseparated into stems and leaves
750 ml of chicken broth
175 g pearl barley
Salt and pepper

1 Drumsticks, wings or a whole bird?

Put the chicken in a large pot. I prefer the wings and thighs, because they give a lot of flavor per dollar, but you could use a whole bird and add some of the meat to the broth at the end (save the rest). cooked meat for another meal). This is also a good place to stick a roasted chicken carcass, to give your soup a little extra oomph.

Felicity Cloake's Chicken SoupThe wings and thighs give the best flavor, but a whole bird will do as well.

2 Boil and skim

Add enough cold water to the pot to cover the chicken completely, then bring to a slow boil. Skim off any foam that rises to the top; this is important because it will taint the flavor of the finished soup, so don’t be tempted to continue until you’ve removed and discarded as much of it as possible.

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3 Wash and chop the vegetable broth

While the broth simmers, wash and coarsely chop the celery, onions, and two each of the leeks and carrots; there’s no need to peel the onions or carrots unless they’re dirty, or to be too precise with the cut, because they’re all going to strain once they’ve lost their flavor, but make sure there’s no mud hiding in the folds of the leek.

Felicity Cloake's Chicken SoupOnions, carrots, celery and leeks make up the vegetable broth.

4 Add the vegetables and simmer

Add the chopped greens to the skim pot with the parsley stems and broth, then simmer for about two hours, stirring occasionally to ensure the aromatics are evenly distributed. Meanwhile, cook the barley in a saucepan of boiling water for 20-25 minutes, until tender, then drain. Peel the last carrot and finely chop it along with the rest of the leek.

Felicity Cloake's Chicken SoupAdd the vegetables to the pot and cook over low heat for two hours.

5 Strain, shred the meat and return to a simmer

Strain the soup through a fine strainer and return the broth to the pot. Remove the meat from the chicken bones (note that if you are using wings and thighs, it will be quite tough, but should still be quite flavorful) and add it to the pot. Discard the bones and all in the colander. Bring the soup to a simmer, then add the chopped carrot and leek.

6 finishing touches

Cook for about 10 more minutes, until the vegetables are cooked to your liking, then add the cooked barley. While heating, season the broth to taste. Divide among bowls, then chop the parsley leaves and sprinkle on top before serving.

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Felicity Cloake's Chicken SoupWhen the vegetables are ready, add the cooked barley.

7 And if you prefer dumplings…

If you prefer the meatballs to barley, instead of pre-cooking them in Step 4, mix 100g all-purpose flour with a pinch of salt, 1 tsp baking powder, 50g grated suet or butter and enough cold water to make a mass. Roll into six meatballs, then add them to the strained soup and cook for 15 minutes before adding the second batch of vegetables.

8… or an Asian flavor…

To give the soup Asian notes, replace the parsley with cilantro and add a slice of Thai chili, a few slices of fresh ginger and a star anise when you add the first batch of vegetables. Replace the barley with a block of rice noodles, simply soften them in the hot strained soup, and top with chopped chili, cilantro, and a wedge of lime.

9… or a classic creamy

For traditional cream of chicken, mix 100ml double cream and one egg yolk in a small bowl. Once the soup is ready, remove it from the heat and quickly stir in the cream mixture. Double check the seasoning – I like to grate nutmeg. You can top the soup with a sprinkling of chopped chives or tarragon leaves (in which case, use the stems in Step 4) instead of parsley.

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