Last Sunday I made steamed chicken for Sunday’s dinner. While my family ate a great deal of it, there was enough left over for soup on Monday. Making soup with leftovers is second nature to me.
A little planning goes a long way. When I put the leftovers away I pull any large pieces of meat from the bones while it is still soft from cooking. I store the bones, skin, and any remaining broth separately from the meat. Adding the meat at the end of cooking the soup prevents the chicken from turning tough.
Karl’s Leftover Steamed Chicken Soup
Leftover steamed chicken carcass with any remaining broth
Leftover pea sprouts and mushrooms
2 cups water or commercial chicken broth
1 cup yellow onion, coarsely chopped
2 cups Shanghai bok choi coarsely chopped, green leafy parts kept seperate
Leftover cooked rice
1. Bring the bones and broth to a boil in a soup pot.
Tip: While the pea sprouts were a bit “cooked to death,” I still used them to add flavor to the stock.
Note: Depending on how much broth remains from the dinner you may wish to add some water or broth—it depends on how many people you wish to serve.
2. Reduce the heat and simmer, covered, for 20-30 minutes.
Note: There was plenty of Chinese five spice clinging to the chicken skin. If you removed the skin before steaming the chicken you might need to add another teaspoon of the spice.
3. Strain the solids from the soup and return it to the pot.
Tip: Pick out any mushrooms out of the solids and—after the bones have cooled—remove any remaining bits of meat.
Note: Squeeze out any broth remaining in the pea sprouts—or return them to the pot.
4. Add the onions and white parts of the bok choi and continue simmering the soup for another 10 minutes.
5. Stir in the chicken and leafy parts of the bok choi and simmer 4-5 minutes more.
6. Put some rice into individual bowls and pour the soup over the rice.
Tip: Adding the soup to the rice prevents it from overcooking and turning mushy.
7. Serve immediately.