Prep 1 hr
Cook 1 hr 30 mins
I started out to use up a couple of chicken thighs that I had defrosted. One thing led to another and I ended up with this and it is good! So I decided to share it with you. I like to keep some chicken thighs in the freezer because I think they are the most versatile part if not using the whole chicken. If I need another specific part, like skinless, boneless breasts for something special then I just go get that for that meal. I like to use kale rather than collard greens, spinach, or other greens, most of the time,, though I do also use collards and spinach. Spinach has oxalate in it which affects calcium processing and are off my list for now, though I prefer it normally in lots of dishes. Kale is a bit thicker and tougher and so has to be cooked more, but it is not as tough as collards and has a nice flavor. Chayote is found in the Hispanic or Asian produce sections. It's in the squash family, looks kind of like a green pear on the outside. I peel them, cut them in half along the slit, and then cube them like potatoes, usually, and use them with potatoes too. Ponzu is new to me, an Asian sauce with combination of soy sauce and citrus. I just kind of decided to experiment and try it in the soup and it works! I didn't add any salt to this, which was very plain tasting till I added the ponzu. This version of chicken soup is an eclectic 'fusion' of various ingredients from a few traditions. I found it to be very satisfying. Now, if you leave the ponzu out it is going to be a different thing, so you can comment that you changed this or that and the other thing and that is fine but just realize that that makes it another recipe. If you do change a lot of things then I might also like yours and so if you post your recipe then let me know so I can try it your way. You might want to add more chicken, or more carrots, or less kale, or less garlic,, and that is all good. This is what I had on hand and what I did,, and it was good.
- Wash the chicken and then cut it along the bone on both sides so that there are 3 pieces of chicken for each thigh.
- Put chicken in a saucepan with about a quart of water, so that the chicken is covered. Add the bay leaf. Bring to a boil and then lower the heat to low, simmering for about 1/2 hour.
- Skim the water to remove any scum and then transfer the chicken and water to a larger kettle or stockpot. Turn on the heat to medium.
- While the chicken thighs are cooking in the sauce pan, wash the kale. Pull the smaller leaves off the stem and then trim the thick stems off, and tear the leaves up into pieces that are about 1" to 2". Put the kale into the larger pot on top of the chicken first.
- Slice the chayote, along the slit, in half, and then peel and cut into 1" cubes.
- Peel the potato and cut into 1" cubes.
- Peel and cut the carrots, and celery and put everything into pot.
- The kale will be wilting. Give things a stir. Cover with water.
- Chop as much onion as you like, and as much garlic as you like and add it to the pot.
- Add as much water as you like and bring it all to a boil. Then lower the heat to simmer for about an hour.
- I added the soy sauce and ponzu after it had finished cooking, but I'm not sure it matters when it is added inches I added just enough for an accent flavor without adding enough to make it strong.