Chicken Soup! What makes this soup special is the attention to detail. The health benefits come from wholesome ingredients and nutrients extracted from the bones. Thjs soup is made over two days so that it is 99% fat free. It has a rich texture and great flavor. Enjoy.
3 bone-in chicken breasts
3 stalks celery
1 large yellow onion
1/2 tsp. dried sage, or 2 tbs. fresh sage leaves
1/4 tsp. coarse ground black pepper
2 large carrots
1 1/2 tsp. Kosher Salt
1 tbs. cooking oil
1/4 cup pearl barley
Remove the skin and place into a three quart dutch oven. Brown the skins on all sides. Add 4 cups of water and boil. Remove the bone from the chicken breast meat, crack, and add to the water. Chop two stalks of the celery and add to the water. Cover and simmer over low heat for two hours. Sllice the carrots and cut the chicken into 1/2 inch cubes. Place in freezer bags, seal, and refrigerate.
Taste the broth. Remove the pot cover and cook for 30 minutes to concentrate the broth. Taste again and season with salt to taste. Strain the broth through a fine mesh strainer, or through cheese cloth into a sealable container. Place into the refrigerater and chill overnight. When ready for the chicken soup meal, remove the broth from the fridge and lift the hardened fat from the broth. Place the broth into the pan and bring to a boil. Add the barley to the broth and let cook for thirty minutes. Chop the remaining two stalks of celery the carrot slices, and the onion, and add to the simmering broth. Add the sage and black pepper. Let simmer until the carrot is cooked through. Taste and correct the seasoning. At this point, you may wish to add a little garlic powder, soy sauce, and maybe a touch of ginger. Stir, cover, and simmer for twenty minutes. While the soup is simmering, add the cooking oil to a stainless steel, or cast iron frying pan preheated over medium-high heat. Wipe with a paper towel until just a sheen of oil is left on the pan surface. Add the diced chicken and lightly brown. Remove from the pan to a seperate bowl.
Ladle the soup into serving bowls and equally distribute the diced chicken.
This soup is more work than standard chicken soup. It's truly the gourmet version, bonless, and with a great broth flavor, coupled with succulent and juicy/tender chicken. Serve with a good crusty Itallian or french bread.
Hint, for that wow factor, make a batch of bisuit dough and drop by spoonfulls into the boiling broth. Cover and steam the dumplings for 20 minutes before serving. Remove the dumplings to a seperate bowl, ladle the soup into serving bowls, and add the chicken. Place one or two dumplings into each bowl and serve poping hot.
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