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Cleansing Ginger-Chicken Soup

['1 onion, sliced', '2 celery stalks, chopped', '8 ounces unpeeled scrubbed ginger, cut into 1/2"-thick slices', '2 garlic cloves, crushed', '10 whole black peppercorns', '1 3-pound whole organic chicken, cut into 7 pieces (2 breasts, 2 legs with thighs attached, 2 wings, 1 back)', 'Kosher salt', 'Cilantro leaves (optional)']

Combine the first 5 ingredients in a large heavy pot. Add chicken, placing breasts on top. Add 6 quarts water (preferably filtered or spring water); bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Cover with lid slightly ajar. Reduce heat to low; simmer until chicken breasts are just cooked through, about 30 minutes. Transfer chicken breasts to a plate; let cool, then cover and chill. Continue to simmer soup, uncovered, until broth is fully flavored, about 2 1/2 hours longer. Return breasts to soup to rewarm, about 5 minutes.
Remove chicken from broth. When cool enough to handle, coarsely shred meat; discard skin and bones. Place a fine-mesh sieve over another large pot; strain broth, discarding solids in strainer (you should have about 8 cups broth). Season with salt.
Rewarm soup. Divide chicken among bowls. Pour hot broth over, dividing equally. Garnish soup with cilantro leaves, if desired.

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