Judith Lerner’s Chicken Soup
1 whole Empire or organic chicken
good handful whole curly parsley on stalks, well washed, remove before serving
a few whole stalks dill weed, well washed, remove before serving
2 or 3 apples, whole, remove before serving
3 bay leaves, remove before serving
3carrots, peeled and sliced
3 small parsnips, peeled and sliced (optional)
1/2 to 1 cup peeled, diced turnip or rutabaga (optional)
3 large celery stalks with leaves, sliced
1 pound onions, sliced
2 or to taste whole, unpeeled garlic cloves
1 large leek including the green parts, well cleaned, sliced
1 teaspoon sea salt or 2 teaspoons Kosher salt
no black pepper
pinch of cayenne
water to cover well
garnish finely minced fresh curly parsley and dillweed
garnish: lukshen/noodles, farfel/chopped noodles or mandlen/baked soup nuts, preferably homemade
Prepare soup a day ahead. Soup will be best if all ingredients are organic.
Tie parsley and dill stalks together in a bunch. Bring all ingredients except garnishes gently to a boil. This produces better flavors and textures than bringing rapidly to a boil. Cover. Lower heat to simmer. Cook slowly two or three hours to develop rich flavor. Skim foam if you like; I do not do this.
Chill overnight. Remove most but not all of the congealed fat. A few drops of fat between the garnishes in each soup bowl is traditional. Gently reheat. Remove apple skins -- the apple pulp will have melted into the soup -- bay leaves, parsley & dill before serving. Serve in wide, flat bowls garnished as desired. Serves 6 to 8.