What’s For Dinner: Chicken Soup with a Cypriot Twist
This soup, called “Soupa Avgolemono” or Egg and Lemon Soup with Chicken, is a Cypriot soup that is traditionally served during Easter and Christmas festivities. I make it for my family all of the time, since it’s a fairly hearty soup that doesn’t take much to make.
3 – 3 ½ pound whole Chicken
Juice of 2 lemons
1 Cup of long-grain white rice, rinsed
Chicken stock cube
Salt and pepper, to taste
Wash the chicken and place it in a large pot. Fill up the pot with water and bring to a boil. Remove any froth, which may form as it begins to boil. Cover and simmer for about one one and a half hour to two hours. While boiling make sure to top up the pot with water, the chicken should always be covered.
Once chicken is cooked, remove and let cool. Spoon off any excess fat from the stock. Add more water to the pot (depending on how many people you want to feed). Dissolve the stock cubes in a little of the stock in a bowl and return to the pan. Add the rinsed rice and bring back to a boil. Cook rice according to package. Once rice is cooked, turn off the heat.
While the rice is cooking, juice lemons and make sure there are no pits. Crack four eggs into a bowl and beat lightly. Once eggs are whisked, slowly add lemon juice so it doesn’t curdle. For a creamier soup use a whisk.
In order for the egg and lemon not to curdle, you must slowly add one ladle of the stock in to the bowl of egg, beating constantly to avoid curdling. Repeat with a further two ladles of soup, remembering to beat the mixture continuously. Return the egg mixture to the remaining soup in the pan. Adjust the seasoning with some salt and pepper.
Depending on your preference, as this is a Greek soup many Greeks don’t put the chicken in the soup but my kids love it. Cut up the chicken into pieces and add it into the soup. This is a great way to add pieces of the chicken the kids might not eat.