Diane Rossen Worthington
A Hearty Soup That's Seriously Simple to Make
Some days are just bone chilling. That's when I like to whip up a pot of this classic Italian soup.
Stracciatella means string or rag, and that is exactly what the egg looks like once it is cooked in the soup. The classic rendition just has the chicken broth, eggs and parsley. That's nice for a light beginning to a meal, but I prefer this meal in a bowl version.
Colorful and loaded with vegetables and slices of moist white chicken, this is a soup I rely on for its easy preparation and big flavor.
It is important to use a good quality chicken stock that is rich in flavor and not loaded with salt. Go for an Italian Parmesan cheese for a nutty, savory aroma. The chicken cooks quickly in the simmering broth as do the slivered spinach leaves. To shred the spinach, roll the leaves up and then thinly slice. You will have shredded spinach leaves. One last tip: Slowly add the egg so that it will have time to cook into thin strings of egg.
6 cups good quality chicken stock
2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
1 small carrot, peeled and julienned
1 small celery stalk, julienned
2 tablespoons freshly grated Parmesan cheese
3 tablespoons finely chopped parsley
1 pound skinless and boneless chicken breasts, cut into 1/2-inch thick slices
1/2 pound spinach leaves, cut into very thin strips
Salt and black pepper
2 tablespoons finely chopped parsley, for garnish
1. In medium saucepan combine the stock and garlic on medium-high heat and bring to a boil. Add the carrots and celery and cook, covered, for 4 minutes or until crisp tender.
2. Add the cheese, parsley, chicken pieces, spinach and simmer for 2 minutes or until the chicken is just cooked through and until the spinach is wilted but bright green and the cheese is melted. Remove from the heat.
3. Lightly beat the eggs in a small bowl with a fork and slowly pour it into the soup. Stir with a fork back and forth until threads appear. Season with salt and pepper and taste for seasoning. Ladle into bowls and garnish with parsley. Serve immediately.
Diane Rossen Worthington is an authority on new American cooking. She is the author of 18 cookbooks (click here), including "Seriously Simple Holidays: Recipes and Ideas to Celebrate the Season," and also a James Beard award-winning radio show host.
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Chicken-Vegetable Stracciatellas - Recipe
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