Chicken soup is one of the most comforting dishes in the world, and I know every culture has their own version. It’s not only delicious, but it also has healing powers. It’s not called Jewish penicillin for nothing, after all.
But I admit: this winter I was sick of plain old chicken soup and wanted to try something new. Pinterest to the rescue, where I came across this version for Greek Lemon Chicken Soup from A Spicy Perspective. I made a few of my own tweaks based on what I had in my kitchen, and voila – a slightly more exciting chicken soup was born.
The soup was easy enough to throw together for a weeknight dinner (only about 20 minutes prep time), but delicious enough for a Sunday supper or Shabbat dinner. I would serve this simply with some olive oil roasted garlic bread for a satisfying weeknight meal.
Lemony Chicken Soup with Swiss Chard and Rice
2 chicken breasts, on the bone with skin left on
salt and pepper
1 small onion, finely diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
pinch red pepper flakes
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1/4-1/2 cup dry white wine
6 cups chicken stock
2 cups water
zest and juice of one lemon, plus extra lemon for serving
1 cup cooked rice
1 large bunch swiss chard (can also substitute spinach or other leafy greens)
salt and pepper to taste
Sprinkle chicken breasts with salt and pepper on each side.
Heat 2 Tbsp olive oil in a large stockpot over medium heat. Sear chicken skin side down on each side and cook until golden brown. Remove chicken and set aside.
Add onion to pot and saute 3-4 minutes. Add minced garlic, red pepper flakes and dried oregano and continue to cook, scraping brown bits off bottom of the pot.
De-glaze pan with wine and reduce for one minute. Add stock, water, lemon juice and zest and bring to a boil. Place chicken back in pot and reduce to simmer on low-medium heat.
Simmer for 25-30 minutes. Remove chicken and allow to cool slightly.
Add swiss chard to pot and cook until just wilted.
Shred chicken from the bone and add back to pot. Taste soup and season with salt and pepper.
Serve soup with cooked rice and additional fresh lemon juice.
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Pronounced: shuh-BAHT or shah-BAHT, Origin: Hebrew, the Sabbath, from sundown Friday to sundown Saturday.