From the Stove #3: Chicken Rice Soup

From the Stove

If you want something warm and hearty and also absolutely delicious for this chilly time of year, then look no further than this chicken rice soup recipe; naturally with a few little additions to make it taste even better.  This particular recipe is from Epicurious, and is real simple and easy to make for such a satisfying result.

Here are the ingredients:

  • 1 large onion, coarsely chopped
  • 3 large celery ribs, cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices
  • 3 medium carrots, cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices
  • 1 (3 1/2- to 4-pound) chicken
  • 1 cup long-grain brown rice
  • 1/3 cup packed fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves
  • 3 teaspoons salt
  • 3 quarts water
  • Freshly ground black pepper

Here’s how you make it:

Combine onion, celery, carrots, chicken, rice, parsley, and salt in a 6-quart pot. Add water and bring to a boil, then reduce heat, cover, and simmer, skimming off fat as needed, for 1 hour.

Transfer chicken to a colander. When cool enough to handle, remove meat; discard skin and bones. Coarsely shred chicken and return to soup. Add 2 teaspoons salt and pepper to taste and reheat if necessary.

Here’s how we made it:

– While I’m sure the complete chicken is a good way to do it, we went with the regular old chicken breasts method, did about 3-4 of them.

– We’re not too big on celery, so we just did 5-6 carrots instead.

– We also added 3-4 cloves of garlic, because YOU GOTTA HAVE GARLIC.

– We knew that plain water would make the whole thing pretty bland, but stock can be expensive when you need so much, so we went with chicken Oxo cubes, ideally you’d want to go with three.

– In addition to salt and pepper we added some thyme.

– I recommend, if you go with the chicken breast method, to put them at the base of the pot and then add all the cubed and diced vegetables and rice on top so it fills all the crevices.  Then add the spices.  That way when you start adding the water to mix with the Oxo cubes, you can get in as much water as possible.  The two times we made it, we still couldn’t get the required three quarts of water in.  Of course, once you’ve eaten some of it, you can add more water as needed, depending on how soupy or stewy you want it to be.

– Once it’s cooked for about an hour, we took out the chicken breasts and let them cool, and then instead of cutting up the chicken into squares, we shredded it, just using our hands.  Then out all the chicken back in, stir it up, and let it sit for about ten minutes, and voila, it’s ready to be consumed!