Cockaleekie Soup


  • 20 cups water
  • 1 (2 to 3 pound) whole chicken
  • 1/2 white onion, chopped
  • 2 large carrots, chopped
  • 2 celery ribs, chopped
  • 6 large leeks, cut into 1-inch chunks, or more to taste
  • 2/3 cup pearl barley
  • 1 teaspoon celery seed
  • 1 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper


Bring water to a boil in a large stock pot; cook chicken in the boiling water until fully cooked, about 1 hour. Remove chicken, keeping water in stock pot, and cool; discard skin, pull meat from bones, and put bones back into water for stock. Add onion, carrots, and celery to water and boil, about 1 hour.

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Soak leeks in a bowl of water, about 10 minutes; drain.

Remove bones and vegetables from stock using a slotted spoon. Add chicken meat, leeks, barley, celery seed, cloves, salt, and black pepper to stock and simmer until barley is tender and flavors have blended, about 1 hour.