I made soup. Soup that is deliriously good, spicy, and will fight off any cold that you have lurking. It is also green. Green foods are cool right now, right? And cilantro is full of antioxidants and is said to have antibacterial and immune-boosting properties. It is also a digestive aid, and could even decrease anxiety.
A Cozy Kitchen has been one of my favourite food blogs for a while now, and this recipe was her Mother’s, who is from Peru. I used this recipe exactly as written, not adjusting anything at all to my own tastes, in hopes that I would get a truly authentic result. While I’ve never been to Peru, this soup is spicy and so chalk-full of flavour that I can’t imagine anything could possibly make it better.
I don’t have a lot of experience in international cooking, but I do love finding new recipes for ethnic dishes and I can’t wait to travel more and experience the world through food, learning recipes along the way. In fact, I am already dreaming up my next trip (after Europe, this summer) to travel South America.
I don’t know that I’ll ever be able to choose a favourite “type” of cuisine to eat or even to cook, because I love all food so much. I love Italian, Japanese, French, Spanish, Indian, Vietnamese (to name a few), and now Peruvian, so how could I possibly pick one? I couldn’t.
Aguadito (Peruvian Chicken Soup):
Borrowed from A Cozy Kitchen
3/4 cup Cilantro Leaves
1 Serrano Pepper, halved & deseeded
4 Garlic Cloves (2 whole and 2 minced), divided
4 1/4 cups Chicken Broth, divided
2 tbsp Olive Oil
2 Chicken Thighs, skin on & bone in
2 Chicken Drumsticks, skin on & bone in
1/2 Yellow Onion, diced
1/2 Red Bell Pepper, diced
1/2 tsp Ground Cumin
1/4 cup White Rice
1 ear of Corn, cut off the cob (or canned if not in season)
Salt to taste
1. Add cilantro leaves, serrano pepper, 2 garlic cloves and 1/4 cup of chicken broth to a blender. Blend until mixture is thoroughly combined. Set aside.
2. In a large pot, heat olive oil over medium-high heat. When hot, carefully add chicken thighs and drumsticks, skin-side down. Cook on first side for 4-5 minutes, and until skin is crisp and slightly browned. Flip on second side and cook for an additional 5 minutes. Remove from pot and set aside.
3. If the chicken absorbed all of the oil, add one more tablespoon of olive oil. Add yellow onion and cook until translucent, about 5 minutes. Next, add red bell pepper and ground cumin, allowing to cook for 1-2 more minutes. Add minced garlic atop of mixture and cook until fragrant.
4. Add the rice and cilantro liquid mixture to the pot and mix, being sure to completely coat the rice. Gently add the chicken back to the pot and cover with the remaining 4 cups of chicken broth. The broth should just cover the chicken. Cook for 20-30 minutes, and until rice is fully cooked.
5. When you’re ready to serve, add salt to taste. This will all depend on how salty your chicken broth was. Mix in corn right before serving.
6.Add a few cilantro leaves to each bowl of soup, along with a few wedges of lime. It’s important.