My son’s latest regimen threw me for a loop last week. With the apparent blessing of all other 13-year-old boys on the world wide gaming web, my former meatatarian has been living on a steady diet of cinnamon toast crunch cereal, cilantro/jalapeno hummus and pita chips. I’ve learned to expect this dietary behavior from my daughter, who occasionally takes a break from meat. But never my son. After all, this is the kid I’ve seen eat a half-pound burger topped with ham and bacon and still get back on his skis!
So I overdid it the other day on the Peri Peri Chicken. I made far more than one man could possibly eat. And then, after watching the leftovers languish in the fridge, I hit on a solution: Peri Peri Chicken Soup. Good for the soul; good for what ails you; and good for a cold winter’s day. And who knows? Maybe if I freeze some for a later date, my kids will join me for a tasty bowl.
Now we’re talking!
Peri Peri Chicken Soup
For the stock:
½ recipe of Peri Peri Chicken (see note)
10 cups of water
2 tablespoons of olive oil
2 sticks of celery, chopped
2 carrots, chopped
1 medium onion, chopped
1 teaspoon of dry thyme
10 sprigs of parsley
1 Tablespoon lemon juice
¼ teaspoon of cayenne
3 teaspoons of salt
To finish the soup:
1 stick of celery, chopped
1 carrot, chopped
3 Costena Amarillo or Caterina chili pods (optional)
½ lemon, in 6 pieces
Peri Peri Chicken note: If you have the option, make this soup with 2½ pounds of Peri Peri Chicken that has been cooked only through the 1st baking (see recipe Here), but not finished. This will yield the best results.
You could also make this with other leftover chicken, adding vinegar, spices and a quartered lemon to make the characteristic Peri Peri flavor.
To make the stock: Remove the breast meat from the Peri Peri Chicken and set it aside. In a 6-quart stockpot sauté the carrots, celery and onions in olive oil for 10 minutes. Break the carcass of the half-chicken into thirds, and add it, the pan drippings and cooked lemon to the stockpot. Now add the water and all other stock ingredients. Bring slowly to a rolling simmer over medium heat, but do not let the stock boil. Lower the heat and simmer for 2 hours or more, skimming the fat from the top as necessary.
To finish the soup: Strain the stock into a 4-quart pot. Remove the thigh meat and the leg meat and put with the reserved breast meat. Discard all strained vegetables and chicken remnants.
Add 1 chopped carrot, a stick of chopped celery and the chili pods to the stock and simmer for 45 minutes. Now add the lemon wedges and simmer for a further 15 minutes. Adjust salt if necessary. At this point, for a bit more heat, you can also add hot sauce or more cayenne pepper.
To serve: Chop the chicken meat into half inch pieces. Put about ½ cup diced chicken into each bowl and pour hot soup over it. Garnish with a piece of lemon or two and a chili and serve immediately.
This lemony fresh-tasting soup with a hint of heat is great with a crusty loaf of bread, or perfect as the start of a spicy meal!