A bowl of chicken and egg comfort

A bowl of chicken and egg comfort
  • Serves icon Serves 4
  • Time icon Hands-on time 25 mins, cook time 40 mins

This bowl of goodness is based on the Greek avgolemono – basically a soup with chicken, orzo pasta and a poached egg, enlivened with parsley. The dish is lemony-fresh, comforting and invigorating, like springtime in a bowl.

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed to a paste with a few sea salt crystals
  • 4 skinless chicken thigh fillets or 2 breasts
  • 500ml good homemade or shop-bought chicken stock
  • 6 medium eggs
  • Splash of wine vinegar
  • 2 unwaxed lemons
  • 150g orzo pasta
  • Sea salt crystals and freshly ground black pepper
  • 20g flat-leaf parsley, leaves removed, to serve

Method

  1. Heat the oil over a medium heat and fry the onion for 4 minutes to soften. Add the garlic, chicken thighs, stock and 500ml water. Bring to a gentle simmer and cook for 15–20 minutes until the chicken is just tender.
  2. Meanwhile, poach four of the eggs, one at a time. Have a pan of boiling water ready and add a tiny splash of wine vinegar. Swirl the water and crack the first egg into the vortex, turn off the heat and time for 2½ minutes. When the egg is ready, lift into a bowl of cold water and continue poaching the other three eggs in the same way.
  3. Finely zest one of the lemons and set the zest aside in a small bowl. Thinly pare off the rind from the other, shred it finely, put in another small bowl and cover for serving later. Juice both the lemons into a medium bowl, crack in the remaining two eggs and whisk with a fork, then set aside.
  4. When the chicken is ready, lift it out of the stock and put onto a plate. Continue to simmer the stock gently. Add the orzo and fine lemon zest to the stock with a pinch of salt and cook for 8 minutes or until the orzo is almost cooked. Shred or slice the chicken thinly and return to the stock.
  5. Fill a bowl or pan with boiling water and gently lift the poached eggs into the water to heat through for a minute. Gradually mix a few ladlefuls of the hot stock into the lemon and egg mixture, then add this mixture to the pan of hot stock and turn off the heat. Stir well and serve in large bowls each topped with a hot poached egg, shredded lemon rind and parsley leaves.  Season to taste.

Recipes taken from Cracked by Linda Tubby. Published by Kyle Books. Photography by Ali Allen.

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