Monday, January 18, 2010

Chicken Soup with Baby Bok Choy

Strange to have the first chicken soup of the cold weather come this late - and without leeks, no less. I had originally wanted to do this with the baby bok choy that I'd bought last week, but a combination of circumstances - aging celery and ginger root at home, very reasonably-priced chicken thighs at the store near the school where we volunteered for MLK Day and the need for something that would see me through a few days of work lunches all conspired to create this riff off this recipe.
  • 2.3 lbs. chicken thighs
  • 1/2 head garlic, peeled and crushed
  • 1 onion, quartered (would have used more, but I only had two; the scallions were added to help make up for this)
  • 3 scallions, roughly chopped
  • 2 small carrots, roughly chopped
  • 2 small celery stalks, chopped
  • 3 in. chunk ginger, peeled and sliced
  • 1/2 tsp. dried thyme (didn't have any appropriate fresh herbs)
  • 6 cups water
  • 1 med. carrot, diced
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 1 stalk celery, diced
  • 8 baby bok choys, roughly chopped, stems and leafy tops separated
  • salt to taste

Put the first batch of ingredients in a large pot and bring to a boil. Turn the heat to medium low, then simmer and cook for about 1 hour or till chicken is tender.

Remove chicken, shred the meat and set aside.

Strain broth, pressing to get all the lovely liquid out of the vegetables.

Add the carrots, onions, celery and bok choy stems to the broth. Bring to a boil and cook till the vegetables are tender but still slightly crunchy, 7-15 minutes. Season to taste.

Add the bok choy leaves and the reserved chicken. Cover, then remove from heat. Wait five minutes, then serve.

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