Fanny wouldn't be pleased with my lack of bird violence but hey ho I am fairly confident that this stock will taste great, it is well seasoned and good quality after all - nothing like a standard cube. I'm keen to taste this lemon soup - or Soúpa Avgholémono as Fanny describes it in Greek - at any rate, and I can't miss out just because I won't bash a chicken to bits. Once steeped, I strain the stock into a small pan, add some rice, and gently simmer it for around 10 minutes.
The soup is smelling sensational at this point, really fresh, vibrant and well lemon-y. Fanny has one last trick to add a bit of flourish to this otherwise simple soup - adding an egg yolk to thicken it, along with the juice and rind of some zingy lemons. I'm a bit nervous about adding the yolk, Fanny warns me it might curdle if it's too hot. However, taking the soup off the heat, I confidently add the zest and juice before flinging in the yolk and beating it in quickly. Not in a violent way.
The colour and texture of the soup changed instantly, from a somewhat (I will admit) pond water-like liquid to something much more rich and lush, if a little reminiscent of thin lemon curd. Fanny guides me to gently heat it again in a double pan. Oh, I don't have one of those, so just have to stir it carefully over a very very low heat until it thickens a little. The soup tastes fantastic despite expecting it to be sweet by look alone - it's deep, zesty and perfect for a new year zing. The rice gives it a good bit of substance. Nothing like pond water and not a smashed up, bashed in old fowl in sight.