Creamy Hot GREEK CHICKEN SOUP – AVGOLEMONO

Table of Contents: SOUPS


This is the perfect recipe to make if you have left-over egg yolks from another recipe as I had from the Coconut Almond Cake posted yesterday.  I refrigerated the yolks
overnight until I made the soup.  You know the old story of killing two birds with one stone?  This is Greek comfort food and oh-so-good.  It can be served as a meal with hot crusty French or Italian bread or with pita bread.  It can also be served as a first course cup of soup.  Any soup left, can be used on vegetables as a sauce.


6 egg yolks
8 cups (2 quarts) chicken broth or stock (homemade is best, but canned is good also)   
2 chicken breast halves (other chicken meat may also be used)
½ cup Orzo pasta or long grain rice
2 large ribs fresh celery, coarsely chopped into ¼-inch pieces
2 T. cornstarch
2 cups sweet milk
¼ tsp. salt
3 to 4 T. lemon juice
Lemon zest of ½ lemon (optional)
Feta cheese, cubed (optional garnish)
Pitted Kalamata olives (optional garnish)

 

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Separate the eggs while cold (easier).  Set aside the yolks and use the whites in another recipe.

Heat the broth or stock to boiling and add the whole chicken breasts, reduce the heat and cover the pot to fully cook the chicken.  When chicken is done, remove from the broth and cut, using scissors, into cubes; then return the meat to the broth.

Bring broth to a boil again and add Orzo pasta or rice; then cover and reduce heat to medium.  For Orzo pasta: cook about 9 minutes or until just tender. For rice: cook about 20 to 25 minutes or until just tender.  Add the celery and continue to cook on medium-low, uncovered.

In a small bowl, beat the egg yolks with the cornstarch; then gradually stir in the milk.  Remove the chicken broth mixture from the heat.  Stirring vigorously, slowly add the milk mixture; then stir in the salt.  Cook on medium-high, while stirring, for 2 minutes.

Stir in 3 T. of the lemon juice and taste.  Only add the additional 1 T. lemon juice if the soup is not lemony enough for your taste.  If adding additional lemon juice, pour small amounts at a time and taste as you add it.  Stir in the lemon zest.  

When serving, if desired, place a split Kalamata olive in the center of the bowl of soup topped with a cube of Feta cheese as garnish.  Serve hot with hot bread.

Greek soup often made by Greek grandmothers called Yia Yia.  The pronunciation of the soup: avh-goh-LEM-uh-noh.  A more traditional recipe for this soup would probably not have the chicken meat or celery in it, but I think they give it wonderful “body” to the soup particularly when it is served as a meal.  Allow the celery to remain just barely tender to the bite.  Various soups of this type are served in the countries bordering the Mediterranean Sea and some versions are used in traditional Jewish cooking.

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