I like to make this chicken soup a day ahead for two reasons. The first is that the broth picks up flavor from the aromatics when allowed to stand overnight. And, after the broth has been chilled, it’s easy to skim any fat from the top.
To keep the soup on the light side, I’ve used chicken breasts for the stock instead of the usual whole chicken, along with canned broth for added flavor. After the chicken is cooked, the skin and bones are discarded. I then like to heat the chicken meat separately in the microwave and ladle the soup over it. This prevents the chicken from shredding or breaking up in the broth during reheating.
Try this on the weekend and have the leftovers Monday.
Place the chicken breasts in a 5-quart saucepot along with the broth, ginger, onion, garlic, green onion and lemon grass. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat, cover and simmer until the chicken is tender, 30 to 45 minutes. Remove the chicken from the broth, let it cool, then cover and refrigerate it overnight. Cover the chicken broth and refrigerate it overnight as well.
The next day, skim any excess fat from the top of the soup. Heat the soup until it’s hot, then strain it through a cheesecloth-lined strainer.
Return the strained broth to the pot and bring to a simmer. Add the rice. Return the soup to a simmer, cover and cook until the rice is tender, 15 to 20 minutes.
Add the mushrooms and bok choy during the last 5 minutes of cooking. Remove the skin and bones from the chicken breasts and dice the meat. Place the chicken in a microwave safe bowl or container and heat in the microwave 1 to 2 minutes to warm.
Place the chicken into the bottom of a serving bowl and ladle the soup over the top.
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