Makes about 6 quarts, serving 8 to 10
Large slotted spoon
10- to 12-quart stockpot
6 quarts chicken stock
1 (4-pound) chicken, preferably all-natural or organic, cut into 8 pieces
1 carrot, trimmed, peeled, and cut into ¼-inch cubes
1 small onion, cut into ¼-inch cubes
1 leek, white part only, trimmed, well-washed, and sliced very thinly
1 celery stalk, cut into ¼-inch slices
Freshly ground black pepper
Optional garnish: 12 sprigs fresh parsley, chopped; 1 bunch fresh chives, cut into whisper-thin pieces
Use the slotted spoon to skim off the layer of solid fat that has risen to the top of the cold stock.
Combine the stock and the remaining ingredients (through celery) in the stockpot. Bring to a gentle simmer over high heat, watching so that it does not at any point go into a full boil, which will cause the stock to become cloudy. Reduce the heat to medium low and simmer, uncovered, for 1½ hours, or until the chicken is tender and cooked through.
Using a pair of tongs, carefully remove the chicken pieces from the soup. Set them aside until cool enough to pick the meat from the bones. Discard any gristle and the bones. Shred the meat, and return to the soup. Season the soup with salt and pepper to taste. If you’re serving the soup immediately, heat it through. Ladle into serving bowls, making sure everyone gets some chicken meat in their bowl, and garnish with the chopped herbs. If you’re serving it later, refrigerate or freeze immediately.
Excerpted from the book THE FREDS AT BARNEYS NEW YORK COOKBOOK by Mark Strausman; with Susan Littlefield. Copyright © 2018 by Mark Strausman. Reprinted with permission of Grand Central Life & Style. All rights reserved.