Before I cool my jets about homemade chicken stock and how it can easily turn into soup for dinner, lunch, snacks, and breakfast, this quick thing: an island of poached egg, set on toast, surrounded by a sea of broth.
This is the kind of very, very simple meal you can feed yourself when there appears to be nothing around to eat. All that’s asked is that you had some small wave of productivity in the past week or two, a wave that led you to make a pot of stock, buy a loaf of bread, come by an egg, and score some Parm. That leads to a humble and truly delicious meal. It’s hearty, warming, and always makes you feel better.
In the soup–which, naturally, doesn’t have to be served for breakfast–you give the stock flavor by turning it into broth with the addition of salt, lemon, and pepper. Then you mount a little campaign for body, thickness, and depth. That’s from the toasted bread, whose starch thickens, from the yolk which seeps out, from the Parm, which melts, and from the olive oil, which adds richness and fat. That’s it. I hope you make this soon.
- 2 cups homemade chicken stock
- Squeeze or two of fresh lemon juice
- 1 egg
- 1 slice good bread, stale or toasted
- About ¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese
- Good olive oil
- Heat the stock and lemon juice with a pinch of salt and some ground pepper, covered, until it comes to a boil. Remove the lid and turn the heat to very low, so the pot just barely simmers. Crack an egg into a little prep bowl. Salt it. Lower it carefully into the simmering soup. Use a spoon to fold the whites back in if they seem to spread. Simmer until whites are set, 3 to 4 minutes.
- Meanwhile, put the toasted bread in the bottom of a wide bowl. Sprinkle with most of the Parmesan and drizzle with olive oil. Gently pour the soup out over the bread, using a spoon to keep the egg from breaking. Sprinkle with more Parm, olive oil, and salt, then eat (breaking the yolk to help thicken things).