Chicken ciorbas can be made at any time of year—swap out the vegetables depending on what is in season. The amount of vinegar can be adjusted up or down to taste. Serve the soup with slices of crusty sourdough bread.
- Heat the oil in a soup pot set over medium heat. Add the onions, celery root, carrots, and garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, until just beginning to soften, 6 to 8 minutes. Add the chicken legs, dill, parsley, and bay leaf. Add enough water to cover the ingredients by about 1 inch and turn heat to high. Bring to a boil, then lower heat to medium-low and simmer, partially covered, until chicken is tender, about 1 hour. The soup should roll along at a gentle simmer. If it starts to bubble vigorously, nudge the heat down a little.
- Remove the pot from the heat and discard the bay leaf. In a medium bowl whisk together both vinegars, the tomato paste, egg yolks, salt, and pepper. Slowly pour a ladle-full of hot liquid into the egg yolk mixture, whisking constantly, then pour the mixture back into the pot and stir to combine. (Do not allow the soup to come to a boil again, or the egg could curdle.) Taste and add more salt, if needed. To serve: place a chicken leg or two into each bowl and ladle soup over top. Dollop bowls with sour cream, if desired, sprinkle generously with more chopped dill and parsley, and serve hot.
Leah Koenig is a writer and author of six cookbooks including The Jewish Cookbook (Phaidon, 2019) - a 400-recipe romp through global Jewish cuisine—and Modern Jewish Cooking (Chronicle Books, 2015). Her writing and recipes have appeared in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Epicurious, Food52, and Tablet, among other publications. Leah leads cooking demonstrations all over the world and lives in Brooklyn with her husband and two children.