Soup for a dreary day

Today is the first day we really had seasonal weather.  It’s cold, rainy and generally dreary out.  I just wanted to stay inside all day and have been craving hot chocolate since about 9 this morning.  I did brave the elements to make a quick trip to the butcher’s so I could have some chicken for this soup.  I’m glad I did.  This soup was comforting enough to warm us up at supper, but bright enough to cheer us up for the evening’s play time.  I served it with a baguette of multigrain bread and a warm cheese dip.  The Christmas music in the background only made it all the cozier!

 

Lemon Chicken Orzo Soup
  • 1lb bone-less, skin-less chicken breast (If you are using legs/thighs, use about 6 total.)
  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • 1 cup orzo
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 2 stalks celery, diced
  • 1 cup frozen peas
  • 4-6 cups water
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/4 cup parsley, minced
Begin with a stockpot heated to medium heat and add in either a splash of olive oil or a pat of butter.  Add the onions and celery and saute until tender.  Season the chicken on both sides and then place in the pan with the onions and celery.  Sear the chicken on both sides and then add the lemon juice.  Cook for 1 minute to let the juice flash flavor the chicken before adding 4 cups of water.  Cook until the chicken is done through.  Then, remove the chicken and shred or dice it.  Return the chicken to the soup and add the orzo and peas.  When the orzo is done, you may need to add more water depending on how puffy your orzo got.  Do a taste test for flavor and adjust accordingly.  Sprinkle with the parsley right before serving.

I made this cheese dip by making a quick roux out of butter, flour and milk.  Then, I added 2 cups of freshly shredded mozzarella and provolone.  I seasoned it quickly with pepper and smoked paprika.  There are some leftovers, so I’m excited to use it tomorrow on cheese toasts to go with tomato soup!

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