I’ll admit it- I had trouble sleeping last night because I was so excited for today’s snow. Technically, I should be mourning the death of my plans to travel home and talk business (but, like, soon-to-be business that I’m real excited about.) But… snow. Even though cabin fever will inevitably kick in, my sanity will stay in tact as I know I will a. eventually go sledding with friends b. continue being super productive with these blessedly free hours c. enjoy some well-cooked meals. My storm-panic-foraging consisted of s’mores materials, frozen fruit, Bagel Bites, oranges, and the ingredients to make my favorite winter soup: lemon-rosemary chicken orzo soup.
This soup is like a dressed-up version of chicken noodle. But more like that dressed-up where you wear a super comfy outfit, somehow get complimented on looking put together, and then feel that resulting gratifying victory of the truly lazy but adorable. Any time I can fool someone into believing that I’m a composed woman with her marbles in order- it’s a good day. While this soup may seem sophisticated, rest assured that it’s delicious and refined without being difficult to make. This dish was lifesaver during a gnarly cold last winter because it’s flavorful, fragrant, and much more nutritious than your average canned variety. I’ve adapted this recipe from Damn Delicious to suit my own tastes with some minor edits but either way, it’s a great way to stay warm during storm Jonas.
LEMON-ROSEMARY CHICKEN ORZO SOUP
YIELD: 6 servings (probably more because soup)
- 2 sprigs of rosemary
- 2 lemons, juiced
- 1 lb boneless, skinless chicken thighs, chopped
- 1 cup uncooked orzo
- 1 lb. carrots, peeled and chopped
- 4 cups chicken stock
- 1 cup water
- 1 shallot, diced
- 3 cloves garlic, diced
- 2 bay leaves
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- Salt and pepper
- Warm 1 tablespoon olive oil in the pot you’ll be using for your soup. Add chicken and season with salt and pepper (if desired.) Cook over medium heat until there’s no more pink- it’ll just be a few minutes. Set aside.
- In your pot, add olive oil and let it warm over medium heat. Toss in your shallot, garlic, and carrots. Cook over medium heat while seasoning with salt and pepper (if desired.) This will be the best smell.
- After shallots have turned transparent (3-4 minutes, be careful not to burn your garlic) add your chicken stock, water, and bay leaves. Let the liquid warm before adding your sprigs of rosemary on top. Cook until fragrant (approximately 1 minute.)
I used 3 sprigs this particular time but it was a bit much- my past attempt with 2 sprigs turned out much more balanced.
- Bring to a boil. Add orzo and reduce to a simmer for about 10 minutes or until cooked al dente (go by the directions on your pasta’s packaging.)
- Stir in lemon juice and add any additional salt and pepper. Then plate up (or bowl up, in this instance) and enjoy!
I actually found this soup to be even better the day after so it’s a great recipe for leftovers. My first time making this soup last winter, I used a slow cooker in place of a big pot and it was just as successful (if not more, because the carrots had more flavor.) If you’d like to go this route, follow steps 1-3 in a frying pan before throwing everything (sans the juice of 1 lemon) in a slow cooker for a few hours on high. Test the consistency of your orzo when you’re ready (as I can’t remember the exact timing needed, yipes) and don’t forget to top off your crock-pot of deliciousness with the remaining lemon before serving.
What staple (or otherwise) items made it in your grocery cart during storm shopping madness 2k16? Would you judge me if I hypothetically didn’t get the “milk sandwiches” joke until two days ago? If you’re not in a snow-ridden area, on a scale of 1-10, how badly do you want people on your social media feeds to shut their traps about the weather? Let me know in the comments below, I love hearing from y’all.
Be kind. Live authentically. Practice gratitude. Hustle daily. Work hard. Stay humble.
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