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Lemon Chicken Orzo Soup


If you're serving right away you can add the orzo pasta and chicken at the same time until the orzo is cooked. If you plan on serving later it at a later time you may want to cook the orzo separately and add right before serving. The orzo pasta tends to soak up all the liquid and can become quite thick if you simmer the soup for a long time. You can always add more chicken stock if you want to thin it out a little.


9 cups chicken stock
2 teaspoons olive oil
1 1/3 cups carrots, chopped
1 1/3 cups onions, chopped finely
1 cup celery, chopped
1 garlic clove, minced
1 teaspoon fresh thyme
1 bay leaf
2 1/2 teaspoons lemon rind, grated
2 teaspoons salt
1 rotisserie-cooked chicken, shredded (about 3 cups)
8 ounces orzo pasta, uncooked (about 1 1/2 cups)
1/4 cup fresh flat-leaf parsley, chopped
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon black pepper, coarsely cracked (optional)
1/4 cup romano cheese, grated (optional)



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