Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Cock-a-Leekie Soup


Serves 6
Recipe from Martha Stewart Living
Adapted and Husband-Tested in Alice’s Kitchen

Since the 16th century, Cock-a-Leekie Soup has been a savory and comforting dish.  Cock-a-Leekie Soup is Scotland’s National Soup made with leeks and chicken stock, classically thickened with barley and flavored with prunes.  This soup is scrumptious and almost stew-like. (If you wish it to be more soup-like, cut back on the amount of chicken.) The secret ingredient of prunes may sound a bit strange, but the prunes add a warm, rich flavor that is not obviously identifiable as dried plums. They cook into the soup and take on the flavor of the broth - without them this soup would be so much less!  (If you've never prepared leeks, check out the link at the bottom of this post.) You will find everything you need to make this soup at Lost River Market & Deli, our community-owned grocery store.

2 Tablespoons olive oil
4 boneless, skinless chicken thighs
3 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves
7 to 8 cups chicken broth or homemade chicken stock
2 cups white wine or water
2 large celery ribs, chopped
1 large carrot, peeled, chopped
2 large garlic cloves, peeled
6 leeks, white and light-green parts only, halved lengthwise, thinly sliced crosswise
12 pitted prunes, quartered (about 2/3 cup packed)
½ cup barley
½ cup finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

Heat the olive oil in a 6-quart Dutch oven or soup pot on medium-high until hot. Add thighs; cook until browned, turning once, about 8 minutes. Transfer to a platter. Repeat with breasts.  Add broth, wine, celery, carrot, and garlic to Dutch oven. Bring to a boil; scrape any browned bits from pot; return chicken to pot, reduce heat, and simmer, for 1 hour. (Wash the platter.)  Transfer chicken back to the clean platter; let cool to room temperature. Add leeks, prunes, and barley to broth. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer until thick, about 40 minutes more. Once chicken has cooled, shred meat and add it back to the pot. Stir parsley into soup, heat through, and serve.  (If making this for later, you may need to add a bit more broth or water to thin the soup a bit before reheating.)
Here are the leeks prepped and ready to go into this fabulous
soup.  How to Prepare Leeks





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