It's officially bowl season and this soup is one of my all time favorites to kick off the cool weather with. Chicken Orzo Soup used to be one of my favorite dishes to eat when I worked in a little Greek restaurant called My Greek Kitchen back in my college days. It's so warming and bright, nourishing and satisfying that when I moved to the city, and stopped eating meat I had to find a way to recreate it. I'm sharing an easy flexitarian recipe for the meatless and chicken version.
New York City is full of Greek Diners, but in the 11+ years that I've lived here I have yet to find any that serve up food as good as My Greek Kitchen (now Aleka's). The tzatziki is never as creamy, or garlic-y, the rice is wrong, and the spanakopita makes me suspicious, as if it's most likely been unwrapped from the freezer rather than lovelingly and laboriously layered together before being baked to crisp perfection. The hummus is a whole other story. My Greek Kitchen/Aleka's is the only establishment I've ever found that serves GREEN hummus. Their hummus was the first hummus I'd ever had in my little upstate, north country life so when I moved to NYC and my plates were placed in front of me with pile after pile of beige hummus, I felt betrayed. While I have since come to terms with, and even enjoy beige hummus it will never measure up to what is happening in that little kitchen in Plattsburgh, NY.
I've been working on replicating this soup recipe long before I was working professionally with food. Its development also started during my vegetarian years so my original recipe was meatless, which felt like such a kitchen win! I'm sharing both versions here so you can happily nosh on whatever suits your tastes, your mood, or your guests.
Avgolemono Soup With Chicken, Brown Rice & Spinach
I'm a Registered Dietitian and Personal Chef in Brooklyn, New York. I grew up around the dinner table, and believe that food is intricately woven through all of our stories. It holds memories of home, childhood, and beliefs; it comforts us, nourishes us, and creates a centerpiece to gather around.