Avogolemeno Soup

This soup was by request by my dad. His mom, my Yaya, used to make it. I had a couple of requests for the recipe when I mentioned making it on facebook a few weeks ago, so here it is... "Yaya" is Greek for grandmother (although I think it is actually spelled differently, this is how our family always has spelled it). My dad is half Italian and half Greek (doesn't he look like Mario?), and his mom, my Yaya, was a very special lady. Look how good-looking they were, Yaya and Pappou (the Italian half). I think this was circa 1955 if the pencil marking on the back of the wooden frame this photo is "painted" on is correct.

Before she died, Yaya bought me a great Greek cookbook at our local Greek Orthodox Church's annual festival. We now live just down the road from the church and I look forward to my kids growing up with trips to the festival for some good food and dancing (and maybe a pony ride, too). I've only made a few recipes so far out of cookbook, but one of them is a staple in our house that I'll share in the near future.

Next time I make this (maybe this week?), I'll update the post with a few photos! Made it again; enjoy the photos!

Greek Chicken Soup- Soupa Avgolemeno

adapted from Essentially Greek

Serves 5 to 6

3 to 4 lb. chicken, washed (remove giblets) 2 to 3 qt. water salt and pepper to taste 1 to 2 carrots, chopped 1 to 2 stalks celery, chopped 2/3 c. rice Avgolemeno (Egg-Lemon Sauce- see below)

Place chicken in pot; cover with water. Add salt and pepper. Bring to a boil. Spoon off froth. Add vegetables and simmer until chicken is tender, about 45 minutes. Remove chicken and vegetables and strain broth. Add rice to broth and bring to a boil and simmer until rice is cooked, about 20 minutes. Prepare Avgolemeno and add to soup. Serve chicken on side, or cut up and put back in soup!

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Egg-Lemon Sauce- Avgolemeno

adapted from Essentially Greek

This is a basic sauce used in soups, stews and over dolmades. I'm also including the sauce recipe, in case you want to make the Avgolemeno for something other than soup.

For Soup:

1 qt. chicken stock from recipe above 3 large eggs Juice of 1-2 lemons (to taste- I say more lemon is better!)

For Sauce:

2 large eggs, separated 2 c. liquid (i.e. chicken stock) juice of 1-2 lemons

Separate the eggs. Beat the egg whites until stiff. Add the whole yolks, 1 at a time, beating until light and fluffy. Add lemon juice and continue beating at a low speed. Slowly pour the broth in, beating constantly so that the eggs will not curdle. Pour sauce over food or mix well into the soup and serve at once. Note: remove soup from heat to stop boiling so that it mixes smoothly with the Avgolemeno.

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Opa!