Up Your Chicken Soup Game, Thomas Keller Style

Yahoo Food is proud to present a new weeklong series called “Master Class.” Throughout the year, we’ll visit with some of America’s top culinary talents and share a behind-the-scenes look at the worlds they’ve created. First up, the country’s most revered chef, Thomas Keller of The French Laundry and Per Se, and Bouchon Bistro. Here, the third restaurant’s chicken soup recipe. Take note: This is not your grandmother’s basic chicken soup.


Photo: Courtesy the Thomas Keller Restaurant Group

Bouchon’s Chicken Soup
Serves 8

Bouchon’s chefs makes their own tagliatelle flavored with black pepper and Parmesan for this chicken soup, but they told Yahoo Food that readers can use store-bought elbow pasta at home.

4 ounces baby carrots, quartered
24 pearl onions
4 ounces celery
3 quarts chicken broth (recipe below)
1 ½ pounds cooked chicken meat, shredded
8 ounces elbow pasta, cooked
Sherry vinegar

Peel and blanch the carrots, pearl onions, and celery separately. Once cooked, quarter the carrots and onions, and slice the celery ¼-inch thick on the bias.

Bring the broth to a simmer. Then add the vegetables, chicken, and pasta, to warm them. Season with salt and sherry vinegar to taste.

Chicken Broth
Makes 3 quarts

Thomas Keller’s rich chicken broth is what Bouchon’s soup is known for.

6 pounds chicken bones
1 ½ quarts chopped leek tops
2 quarts chopped onions
2 quarts chopped carrots
2 whole chickens, roasted

Rinse the bones under cold water for 30 minutes. Drain and place in a large stock pot (or split into two smaller pots), cover with water and bring to a boil, skimming the top of scum. Drain and rinse again.

Add the bones again into the stock pot and cover with water up to the handle of the pot. Bring to a simmer, then add 1 cup of ice and skim the fat from the top of the liquid. Add half of the mirepoix (leek, onion, carrot) and simmer for 45 minutes. Strain through a fine-meshed sieve.

Place the roasted chickens in a large pot, add the remaining mirepoix, and cover with the strained broth. Bring to a slow simmer and cook for 6 hours, skimming fat constantly. Remove the chickens and strain the stock twice, once through a fine-meshed sieve, and once through a fine-meshed sieve lined with cheesecloth.

In a large pot, continue to simmer the strained broth until the liquid has been reduced to 3 quarts.

More from our “Master Class” series on Chef Thomas Keller

Meet Thomas Keller, America’s real top chef

The story behind one of America’s most coveted butters, which is served at Keller’s restaurants

Take a peek at the new French Laundry kitchen

Do you make chicken soup at home? Tell us your favorite recipe!