OK! It is time to remove the frozen chicken parts from your freezer as we are now going to turn them into Chicken Soup…
(In case you are behind in this series or have trouble remembering last week’s menu, please consult our previous column, “Kyra’s Kitchen: Three Meals From One Chicken (Part One)”. Simply search “Kyra” on TownSquzreBuzz and you will find this and many other delightful gastronomical suggestions.)
First make the CHICKEN STOCK
Carcass, skin and parts of the chicken, defrosted in the refrigerator overnight.
1 onion – washed but not peeled [the skin adds color] cut into quarters
3 large carrots, peeled cut into large chunks
3 stalks celery, cleaned, cut into chunks
1 turnip [cleaned] quartered [optional] The stalks of a bunch of parsley
1 chicken bouillon cube
1 vegetable bouillon cube.
Note: you will probably not need salt and pepper as the roast chicken has plenty and so do the cubes.
Place all the ingredients in a large cooking pot – cover with cold water and bring to the boil. Turn down the heat and simmer gently uncovered for 4-6 hours. The soup should cook down to about 2/3 of its original amount. If the soup is cooking down too fast – partly cover the pan with a lid.
Take off the heat and allow cooling.
Strain stock into covered containers.
Chill or freeze the stock until ready to use.
Note: leave the cap of fat on top of the stock as that acts as a preservative and it easily lifted off when you come to use the stock.
Oh! And you are finally allowed to discard what remains of the chicken!
CHICKEN SOUPTo make clear Chicken Broth, taste the stock. If it tastes a bit thin and watery, return the broth to the saucepan and continue to cook down for about 30 minutes until it has a nice rich flavor.
The following soups are based on the premise that you have made a richly flavored stock! Your soups will only be as good as the base……….
CARROT ORANGE SOUP WITH YOGURT ‘CREAM’
4 cups chicken stock [fat cap removed and discarded]
6 large carrots, peeled, cut into large chunks
1 cup orange juice
2 teaspoons grated fresh ginger
2 teaspoons brown sugar
Salt, pepper and lemon juice to taste
Cook the carrots in the stock until soft.
Puree in the blender.
Add the orange juice, ginger and brown sugar and blend.
Return the soup to the saucepan and simmer gently -uncovered for 15 minutes.
Check the seasoning adding salt, pepper and a squeeze of fresh lemon juice to taste.
The soup may be frozen or chilled until ready to eat.
Serve hot or cold with a dollop of Greek yogurt.
LEEK WALNUT SOUP
Nobody believes this smooth velvety soup contains no cream.
2 large or 3 medium leeks, white part only, carefully washed [*see Cooks Notes] and sliced thinly
2 tablespoons butter
3 cups chicken stock
½ cup walnuts
Sauté the sliced leeks in the butter until soft.
Add the stock and simmer gently uncovered until the leeks are translucent – about 10 minutes.
Place 1 cup of the leek soup in the blender and add the walnuts.
Puree on High until VERY smooth and creamy.
Turn the walnut leek mixture out into a container and puree the rest of the soup.
Add it to the walnut mixture.*
Check the seasoning. If you have used a well-flavored stock you should only need a little fresh lemon juice or salt.
Chill or freeze until ready to serve. Serve hot…..
*The reason you puree the mixture in small batches is to prevent the soup from spurting out of the blender and decorating your kitchen.
Leeks are notoriously difficult to clean as soil adheres to the plant as it grows and is embedded in the layers. Cut off the root and slice the leek up the stalk cross wise so you can open up the layers. Then swish in cold water to dislodge the dirt.
Using the same principles as the two soups above, you can create any soup you like from the stock you have made. Try butternut squash, zucchini or broccoli.
Make a minestrone soup by adding cut vegetables and some macaroni.
Would love to hear what masterpiece YOU have created!
McKinney resident Kyra Effren is a contributing writer for TownSquareBuzz.com’s “Food” section. She is a retired food stylist and contributing writer for the “Food” section of Dallas Morning News. In 1975, Effren opened Cours de Cuisine Cooking School in Dallas and in 1978, she was awarded The Commanderie des Cordon Bleu in France for her contributions to French cooking. She has edited multiple cookbooks and served as recipe tester for a number of cookbooks including both of the Mansion on Turtle Creek cookbooks by Dean Fearing and baking books by Nick Malgieri.
Kyra welcomes any and all reader comments and suggestions. What would you like to have for dinner?