1.26.2009

AMAZING AVGOLEMONO!!! (Greek Lemon Rice Soup)

So... up until this point(16 weeks preggo), I haven't gotten TOO many cravings. The ones I did have were easy to get (popsicles, coleslaw, mint chocolate ship ice cream).

UNTIL... I craved Avgolemono.
If you've never heard of this, it's a Greek soup, with a creamy lemony broth and rice, and sometimes chicken. It is so delicious!

However, here in West Michigan, we do not have Greek restaurants (just one little gyro shack, which is decent, I'll admit, but no soup!) If you are unaware, I grew up outside of Chicago and now since I live in Michigan have had to deal with intense pizza withdrawls, but that's another story.

My favorite Lemon Rice soup comes from The Commander, a Greek mom and pop restaurant back home. Their avgolemono does not have any chicken in it, and yet, EVERY recipe I looked up, included chicken. I was afraid that if I tried it, I would be disappointed that it wasn't the real thing, and I knew I didn't want to disappoint a craving pregnant woman (especially myself).

So... I held out until this past weekend, when we were coming into town for my cousin's high school graduation party. On our way back, my hero, the hubby, ordered 2 QUARTS of the stuff and we picked it up on our way home (as well as a pizza- I will make a heartburn exception for Chicago pizza)! That was Saturday. It is now Monday and I am down to the last drop of the first quart container. 2 quarts may seem like a whole lot of soup to you, but in actuality, it's really only about 6 bowls.

So, now, with the end in sight, my fabulous grandfather has saved the day! He just sent me an email with the chicken-less recipe from Epicurious.com. Thanks, Gramps!!!

And now... in case there is anyone out there, pregnant or not, who cannot get lemon-rice soup... here is the recipe!


  • 4 cups basic chicken stock
  • 6 tablespoons (90 g) Carolina or other long-grain white rice
  • 8 egg yolks
  • 1/4 cup (65 ml) fresh lemon juice
  • coarse salt, to taste
  • freshly ground black pepper, to taste

In a medium saucepan, bring the stock to a boil. Stir in the rice and cook until tender, about 8 to 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, beat the egg yolks and lemon juice together in a large bowl.

When the rice is tender, slowly ladle half of the hot broth into the yolks to temper them, whisking constantly. Whisk the egg yolk mixture into the broth and place over low heat. Cook, stirring constantly, just long enough to thicken the soup. Do not boil. Season to taste with salt and pepper.


Enjoy!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


23 comments:

Insanity Kim said...

mmmmm this sounds SO num, and I am not even preggers!

We too moved to a place void of any good pizza, anywhere. By some miracle, my hubby started making homemade pizzas, and let me tell you, they are AMAZING! I am Italian, so I should know, seriously...

It is amazing...

I shall try the soup!

TheresaJ said...

This is one of my favorite soups! I usually make my own chicken stock, using chicken of course, and then debone some of the chicken and add it to the soup. It's a nice complement to the soup and makes it more of a meal for my family, who prefer a little protein in their soup. :)

Yum, you have me thinking now. Think I'm going to make some! :)

Anonymous said...

Thanks so much!!! I grew up in Northwest Indiana (Hammond) and we went to the Commander about once a month. Love the soup!!! We were just up there about a week ago and ordered some soup to take home :-) Now that it's gone my mom is asking me to get a recipe LOL ... thanks so much for posting this ... I'm off to surprise her with some soup when she gets home. Yep, mom lives with us.

Thanks again.

Shelly

karmapearl said...

OMG! Bless you, bless you, BLESS YOU! I am in my first trimester of pregnancy, and I just suddenly had a huge craving for lemon rice soup - from Commander! I grew up in Lansing, IL which is right next door to Munster and I only get to indulge in the lemon rice yumminess about once a year when we visit family for Christmas.

I can't wait to try this recipe!!!

Lynette said...

Thank you for the receipe, I too live in northwest Indiana (Highland) for the past 25 years, but I grew up in Midland Michigan. I never heard of Lemon Rice Soup until I moved here. I love it, I order it every time I go to a greek resturant in the area, I never had it at the Commander, but I'm going to make your receipe for Dinner tonight. I goggled the receipe and it brought me to your BLOG. Congrats on the little one... I am a granny of 5 and 3 of them live in Michigan

Lynette said...

I too live in Northwest Indiana (Highland) and I also from grew up in Midland Michigan. Until I moved here 25 years ago I never heard of Lemon rice soup. I am going to try it tonight for dinner. I found your receipe when I goggled it. I have never eaten at the Commander but this sounds really good. Congrats on the little one , I am the granny of 5 little ones , 3 of them live in Michigan

Anonymous said...

Thank you soo much...I grew up in Highland as well, and now I am living in Pennsylvania. I am not pregnant, but I just got a craving for lemon-rice soup that was extremely intense. I loved Paragon's/the Commander's lemon rice soup, and have been trying to find a recipe. I found a recipe elsewhere, and it sucks. When I googled it again I was blessed to find your blog. Now I cant wait to make this soup! THANKS!!

Anonymous said...

Thank you, Kat! I too grew up in Chicago and love the Commander! I was looking for a Greek lemon soup recipe and knew I found a winner when I read about your backround and quest for an authentic recipe! Now that I live in Arizona of course Im too far from the Commander but with lemon trees in the back yard I have plenty of opportunity to make my own. Thanks again!

Anonymous said...

Thanks so much for this recipe Kat!!! I am from Merrillville, IN and am living in Dayton, OH. We don't go home as much as we used to so I don't get to enjoy Lemon Rice Soup as often as I like! I have never been to the Commander but we have the Broadway Cafe in Merrillville that serves a great soup. I am currently pregnant and got the craving for Lemon Rice soup. I was so happy to have found your web site......IT WAS AWESOME!!! So comforting! I have shared it with my sister who lives in San Antonio and also craves this soup! You were a lifsaver! you know how it is when you have a craving! Thanks so much!

Rebecca @ Postcards from the Suburbs said...

I was searching for a lemon rice soup recipe and happened across your blog. I think I lived at the paragon in highschool! I am also a transplanted region rat, now living in Iowa- the land of bad pizza and no soup. Now if I could perfect the giant dinner rolls they served. hmmmmm....

Patrizzia said...

Searched for this recipe because I too have a craving for this soup. I lived on the south eastside of Chicago, but went to BNI in Hammond and we always went out for lemon rice soup. I am going to make this for Saturday.. I am so excited!

Thanks!

Laura Bacino said...

OMG, My name is Laura Bacino from the famous John's Pizza in Cal City and Munster! John and I just moved to Arizona and he said he was totally missing Commander Lemon Rice as well as Taco Real! I told him I would make it for him so I googled Lemon Rice and came across your post! We are freaking out and sooooo happy! I guess I better get to the store! Thank you so much!

Stephenie Holland said...

I also grew up in the suburbs, Chicago Heights. Lemon Rice soup is a child hood memory for me. I am sick today and that is all I wanted. Than You soo much. It is amazing how we are all connected by one soup. I also had a baby last Sept. Not soo much babies anymore. They really get big too fast.

Anonymous said...

oh my gosh i love you ! i have been begging all my family in highland in to send me some dang soup b/c i couldnt find a recipe for it. i absolutely hate soup except lemon rice and you cant find it in florida anywhere. im going to go get some sourdough bread to go with thanks you are my hero!!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

I grew up in Wes Michigan(land of amazing beauty, but no flavored food) and fell in love with Lemon Rice soup (and pizza, Italian Beef sandwiches,and chocolate shakes from Zels...)when we lived in Munster. Thank you so much for this recipe - we now live in Columbus Ohio, where all the Greek restaurnts serve this soup with chicken and even carrots. Its okay, but never what I'm really craving. I have tried to explin the difference, to no avail. One of my favorite places even offered to strain out the meat and veggies! I might take them a bowl when I make this - the proof is in the pudding, yes?

Melissa from MS said...

Oh my goodness!!!! YOU ARE A LIFESAVER!!!!! I am preggo and have been craving this soup... We only get to eat this soup while visiting my Grandmother in Hammond!!! I have tried to think of ways to have it shipped all the way to MS but no luck!!! I am going home to try this recipe!!!!! THANK YOU!!!!!

Anonymous said...

To be fair, east Michigan (greektown in Detroit especially) has tons and tons of Greek restaurants and they are delicious. So you can get good lemon-rice soup in Michigan too!

Anonymous said...

23 weeks pregnant AND getting over a stomach bug. My husband and I both grew up in NWI and now live in Indy. I wanted nothing more than this soup today.... I hope I have the ingredients! I'll post again after tasting!

Anonymous said...

Thanks. I go all the way to Clarkston Michigan (The Tap Bar and Grille) for my fix. They are Greek owners so their lemon rice soup is delish and their chili has that Greek touch. They also do many other Greek dishes from time to time. I flew into Metro from CA last week and had my husband pick up some lemon soup so I could have it when I got to Clarkston. The other recipes don't come close....yours is awesome. I'm on the west side of MI also.

Anonymous said...

I too am from NW Indiana and love the lemon rice soup from Commanders. I currently live in Arizona,no greek restaurants here either,and have been craving this for some time now. Thanks for the recipe. I will be making this very soon.

Anonymous said...

I was born and raised in the subs of southeast Detroit and they serve lemon rice soup at almost every restaurant and its amazing!!! I now live in louisville ky and can't find a decent greek restaurant anywhere

Anonymous said...

I am from Oregon and was introduced to this soup when my mom's coworker, who is Greek gave her the recipe. I came across this blog because I like to get new ideas on food I like. We were given the recipe with chicken and it's delicious but I think I might try it without just to see what it's like. My mom is the only one who has actually made it so far. Im going to try it. Does anyone have any tips for the egg part. My mom has a hard time with it curdling

Anonymous said...

I previously worked at Commander many years ago. Sometimes when I go back, I ztill stop in and buy a guart to bring home. I wish I would have gotten their recipie from Tommy. Best soup around