This slow cooker soup is perfect for those days that you want a delicious dinner ready with minimal effort.
I've got this Lemon Orzo Chicken Soup slowly simmering away, as we speak, and the aroma wafting through the house is incredible. After perfecting the recipe a few weeks ago, I could hardly wait to make it again.
If you read our last post, you know that we traveled to London early last week to spend some time with our daughter, son-in-law and their four children, Annie, Ellie, Lilly and Luke. On Friday, we packed up the little ones, got on a plane and headed to France, where we're spending a week together in Samoëns, smack dab in the middle of the French Alps.
Although we arrived here in Samoëns after dark, glimpses of the little village brought back lots of fun memories, because we vacationed in this very same place four years ago. Nevertheless, I wasn't prepared for the spectacular view when I pulled open the curtains this morning!
Despite gray cloudy skies, the views in every direction are magnificent! Scott and I ventured out early with little Luke in the stroller. We noted a few new sights in town but, for the most part, Samoens looks just like we left it; quaint, charming and giving you the feeling that you've taken a step back in time.
We were eager to return to our favorite Boulangerie (French for bakery) and hoped it would be as as wonderful as we remembered. Seeing a long line inside the shop and spilling out the door at an early hour was a good sign.
When we noted happy customers exiting with breads of all shapes, sizes and varieties tucked under their arms, carrying bags with flaky pastries peeking out, we were confident that things hadn't changed much. Lukey and I did a little taste test which revealed we were correct indeed!
A little later this morning, Cait and I ran to the local market and picked up groceries for the week. This is where Slow Cooker Lemon Orzo Chicken Soup comes in...
Carrots, onions and celery were on the list along with chicken, stock and fresh herbs.
Oh, and lemons. That's what makes this soup deliciously unique, a splash of fresh lemon juice adds a bright finishing touch to this soup, that's loaded with old fashioned flavor. I had brought some orzo pasta along from home so we were good to go.
When Cait, Josh and the girls headed up the mountain to ski, it didn't take me long to get the soup going. A bit of chopping and the rest was super simple.
By the time they returned home, dinner was well on the way, exuding an incredibly delicious aroma. It's the kind of soup that both kids and grown ups seem to love; and it's wonderful for quick, easy meals on the run.
So whether you're needing a perfect way to warm up on a cold winter day or just a nourishing, delicious soup to enjoy for lunches, casual dinners and meals on the go, pull out your slow cooker and simply combine everything on the list. Super basic ingredients are magically melded together over the hours and your home will waft the same amazing aroma I'm smelling here in my little home-away-from-home in the French Alps. Bon Appetit!
- Ingredients for the soup:
- 8 cups chicken stock
- 2 large bone-in skin-on chicken breasts
- 3 cloves garlic finely minced
- ½ medium onion finely diced
- 1 pound carrots peeled,and thinly sliced
- 4 medium stalks celery diced small
- 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh rosemary
- 2 medium bay leaves
- 1 teaspoon turmeric
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt more to taste
- ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- Ingredients for finishing:
- 1 cup uncooked orzo pasta
- finely grated zest of one medium size lemon
- Juice of 1 medium size lemon
- 2 tablespoons fresh thyme leaves
Combine all soup ingredients (first 11 ingredients) in the bowl of a slow cooker. Cook on medium for 6-8 hours or until chicken and carrots are super tender or on high for 3-4 hours.
Remove chicken breasts and allow them to cool. When cooled, remove the skin and separate the meat from the bones. Dice the chicken into bite-size pieces.
While chicken is cooling, add pasta to soup and increase heat level to high (if cooking soup on low). Cook for 20-25 minutes more or until pasta is tender.
Add lemon zest, lemon juice, thyme and diced chicken. Stir to combine. Taste and add salt if needed.
Serve and enjoy. Soup stores well for 3-4 days in airtight containers in refrigerator. Reheat on stovetop or in the microwave.
Turmeric is a seasoning widely available in the spice section of most grocery stores. It's used in curry powder and it also gives mustard it's yellow color. It doesn't add much flavor to this soup, but does give it a lovely color. Turmeric is known as a powerful medicine that has long been used in the Chinese and Indian systems of medicine as an anti-inflammatory agent to treat a wide variety of conditions.
12 generous servings