I first discovered this Greek Avgolemono Soup, in the ’70s, while living in Tel Aviv and it has appeared on our table countless times since:
- 6 cups fish stock * (I’ve always used chicken stock, but I’ve adapted this recipe here to comply with the requirements for the 9 Days)
- 1/3 cup orzo
- salt, to taste
- 3 eggs, separated
- juice of 1 large lemon
- white pepper
- Bring stock to the boil, add orzo and salt to taste. Stir until the stock starts boiling again. Cover and simmer for about 18 minutes or until rice or the orzo is tender.
- In a bowl beat egg whites until stiff, add yolks and beat until light and creamy. Gradually beat in lemon juice.
- Ladle about a quarter of the simmering soup into the eggs, whisking constantly.
- Slowly add the egg mixture to the soup, while stirring vigorously. Remove soup from heat. Continue stirring for 1 minute as you adjust seasoning with salt and pepper.
- Serve immediately.
* Fish Stock
Yields: 6 cups
- 2 1/4 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 2 1/2 carrots, chopped
- 2 celery ribs, chopped
- 2 pounds bones and heads of fish such as sole, flounder, cod, halibut, chopped
- 10 cups water
- 2 1/4 tablespoons white-wine vinegar
- 4 whole black peppercorns
- 2 1/4 teaspoons salt
- Heat oil in a 5-quart heavy pot over moderately high heat until hot but not smoking, then sauté onion, carrots, and celery, stirring occasionally, until golden, (6 to 8 minutes).
- Add chopped fish, water, vinegar, peppercorns, and salt and bring to a boil, skimming froth, then reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, 30 minutes.
- Pour stock through a fine-mesh sieve into a large bowl, discarding solids. If using stock right away, skim off and discard any fat. If not, cool stock completely, uncovered, before skimming fat (it will be easier to remove when cool).
Enjoy, gentle reader, enjoy!