Delicate, yet filling Chicken Soup

Chicken soup can be quite bland but this one has some oomph to it. I made it last weekend while we stayed over at some friends home in the Barossa (South Australia). You make it in two stages but it’s really simple.

Makes 4 Man serves or 6 for smaller helpings (as recommended for right living!)

One large organic chook (I bought mine at the famed Schultz Butcher’s in Angaston)

4-5 large pods of garlic pounded to a paste

1/2 a small onion also chopped and pounded to a paste

1/2 tsp salt flakes

1 tsp coarse ground pepper

Small dash of olive oil

Rosemary sprig

First Stage : Mix all the marinade ingredients together. Pat the chook dry and massage this marinade all over and into the cavity. Leave for couple of hours. If longer, stick it in the fridge.

Pre-heat the oven to 180 degrees. Before putting the chook into pre-heated oven, drizzle a very small amount of olive oil over it (in a roasting dish) and cook for 35 – 40 minutes. Check from the 20 minute mark onwards to ensure it is not browning too much. Lower the heat if required. Remove when mildy browned and before the meat starts drying out.

Stage 2 : This is where we cheat a bit.

2 litres of store bought chicken stock.

I leek sliced (white part only)

1 large potato peeled and cubed

1 tbsp olive oil

Freshly milled black pepper (a few generous twists of the grinder)

250gms Brussels sprouts finely sliced (or use spinach instead)

In a large casserole dish gently saute the leeks in olive oil. When wilted and starting to get brown edges, add the pepper, potatoes and stock. Bring to a boil and let allow to simmer until the potatoes are cooked through. Set aside until ready to serve.

To serve : Carve approximately 200 gms of chicken breast meat (discarding the skin) per serve of soup. Bring the soup/stock back to the simmer, toss in the sliced Brussels sprouts and give them 3 minutes to cook through. Add the chicken pieces to the soup and stir very gently until the chicken is warmed through.

Serve in warmed bowls and pass around some finely chopped parsley on the side.

Enjoy !

There is usually enough chicken (dark meat) leftover for sandwiches the next day.

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