Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Recipe: Chicken and Black Rice Soup

I inherited my love for chicken "carcasses" from my mother. She's a big fan of cooking down the last scraps of a chicken or turkey into a hearty soup. This made about 10 portions, plenty for freezing or giving away:

Chicken and Black Rice Soup

Stock - Start by cooking down one or two whole chicken carcasses for stock in a big pan with water, an onion, a bay leaf and celery tops. This takes a couple hours. Refrigerate the entire pot until you're ready.

Soup - Scrape off any extra fat solidified at the top of the pan. Strain the broth from the chicken and other bits and put back in the pan. Start two cups of black rice with 1/2 broth and 1/2 water in a rice cooker. Wrangle a good friend into helping you separate the good meat from the rest of the chicken bits. Break the wishbones...make wishes.

Cut two carrots, two parsnips and 4 stalks of celery into small pieces and add to the broth and chicken mixture. Microplane four cloves of garlic into the soup. Salt and pepper to taste. Don't overcook, turn off the heat when the veggies are just softening.

When your rice finishes, pour it into a thin strainer and rinse thoroughly with water. Otherwise, you'll have black soup. Add the rice to the soup mix and cook briefly. Your soup should still turn a little brown thanks to the rice. As with all things like this, the soup is best the next day.

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