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Greek Chicken and Rice Soup with Egg and Lemon (Avgolemono)

Cooks Illustrated, March/April 2017, page 12 Greek Chicken and Rice Soup with Egg and Lemon (Avgolemono)


1½ pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, trimmed
Salt and pepper
12 (3-inch) strips lemon zest plus 6 tablespoons juice, plus extra juice for seasoning (3 lemons)
2 sprigs fresh dill, plus 2 teaspoons chopped
2 teaspoons coriander seeds
1 teaspoon black peppercorns
1 garlic clove, peeled and smashed
8 cups chicken broth
1 cup long-grain rice
2 large eggs plus 2 large yolks

f you have homemade chicken broth such as our Classic Chicken Broth, we recommend using it in this recipe, as it gives the soup the best flavor and body. Our preferred commercial chicken broth is Swanson Chicken Stock. Use a vegetable peeler to remove strips of zest from the lemons.

1. Cut each chicken breast in half lengthwise. Toss with 1 3/4 teaspoons salt and let stand at room temperature for at least 15 minutes or up to 30 minutes. Cut 8-inch square of triple-thickness cheesecloth. Place lemon zest, dill sprigs, coriander seeds, peppercorns, and garlic in center of cheesecloth and tie into bundle with kitchen twine.

2. Bring broth, rice, and spice bundle to boil in large saucepan over high heat. Reduce heat to low, cover, and cook for 5 minutes. Turn off heat, add chicken, cover, and let stand for 15 minutes.

3. Transfer chicken to large plate and discard spice bundle. Using two forks, shred chicken into bite-size pieces. Using ladle, transfer 1 cup cooked rice to blender (leave any liquid in pot). Add lemon juice and eggs and yolks to blender and process until smooth, about 1 minute.

4. Return chicken and any accumulated juices to pot. Return soup to simmer over high heat. Remove pot from heat and stir in egg mixture until fully incorporated. Stir in chopped dill and season with salt, pepper, and extra lemon juice to taste. Serve.