Wednesday, December 29, 2021

Instant Pot Lemon Chicken Orzo Soup

Jeff has gotten a job at Intel so I (Sharon) need to start doing some of the cooking. It's been at least ten years since I've done any cooking and I'm not terribly good at it but I can usually manage to follow recipes, so I just need to find recipes I like. 

This post is the start of my effort to document my attempts at cooking recipes I find on the internet and how they turned out and what we would change next time, assuming we like the recipe enough to try it again. This information is mostly for me as the blog is a pretty easy way to keep track of past efforts.

Anyway, today I made my first pot of Lemon Chicken Orzo Soup. The original recipe was published on allrecipes, but I also archived a copy at Google docs, in case it gets pulled down. It calls for the soup to be made on the stove, but I wanted to cook it in the Instant Pot so we did our best to translate the recipe.

It doesn't feel right to plagiarize the original recipe; just click on one of the links above to see all the details. We had to make a few changes by necessity: 
  • We didn't have orzo pasta so we used elbow macaroni. 
  • We also didn't have any bay leaves, so we omitted them. 
  • We used a blend of homemade chicken and homemade vegetable broth.
  • And we had to use frozen spinach.
We heated the oil in the Instant Pot on the Sauté setting and then added the onion. After a couple of minutes, we added the carrots and celery and let it saute for a few minutes. Then we added the garlic and other spices and let it cook briefly before adding about three quarts of homemade chicken and vegetable broths. (We used a blend of them because that's what we had in our refrigerator.) 

We stirred in the dry pasta and then pressure cooked it for 5 minutes before adding the chicken and lemon and then we set it on Slow Cook until lunchtime. Shortly before lunch, we took off the lid and stirred in defrosted frozen spinach. It had a few minutes to come up to temperature before we actually served it up for the meal.

Overall, we really enjoyed the soup; the pasta seemed a little overcooked, but we can remedy that problem in the next pot. The recipe made 8 servings so we'll be having it a few more times in the next week. 
We served it with Asiago bread that Jeff made. Also amazing.
Next time, I'll try making these changes:
  • Try skipping the pressure cooking entirely and go straight from sautéing to slow cooking.
  • Substitute Herbes de Provence for the thyme and oregano.
  • Add the dry pasta at the same time as the chicken. 
I expect I'll probably make it once a month from now on, whenever we have leftover chicken.