Chicken soup for what ails you - but not as you know it! [Recipe]

Chicken soup for what ails you – but not as you know it! [Recipe]

So, I told you all about my curry eggs cold smasher the other day. Yes, it is a cracker, but it didn’t smash my cold quite as quickly as I wanted to. So, there was nothing for it, I had to call in the reserves: chicken soup, with a twist.

There is scientific evidence that supports the notion that chicken soup is in fact Jewish pencillin (as it has always been said to be). It tastes great too and is not too traumatic a recipe for when you are poorly, as long as you have a chicken in the house. I didn’t but a friend kindly brought one round for me and so I was set.

I love classic chicken soup, but it won’t surprise you that I love it more when I twist it. I have a spiced aromatic chicken noodle soup in my cookbook Comfort & Spice, which graces my invalid tray on the rare occasion that I am ill. This is a new one, that is basically a punchy chicken soup powerhouse with a whole lot of ooomph from chillies, garlic, ginger and fresh turmeric (you can use dried), all layered over with the gentle citrus notes of fresh coriander.

Turmeric, as mentioned in my previous post, is said to have anti-inflammatory, anti-cancer, and antioxidant properties (scientific evidence is scarce but there are lots of studies in progress). I use lots of chillies (said to be a decongestant), and garlic (which is said to strengthen the immune system). A lot of this is anecdotal, but this soup tastes great and is certainly nutritious, so what have you got to lose? Nothing.

I won’t meander further, for I am still in need of this soup, and I have another chicken boiling so that I can make another batch of it.

Eat well, be well and see you on the other side of this.

Chicken soup for what ails you - but not as you know it! [Recipe]

Chicken soup for what ails you – but not as you know it! [Recipe]

Recipe: Aromatic & Hot Chicken Soup Powerhouse

Ingredients

Broth

1 whole chicken (the size doesn’t matter, mine was 1.5kg)
4 large carrots, chopped coarsely
3 onions, peeled and quartered
4 sticks of celery, coarsely chopped
2 bay leaves
6 garlic gloves, crushed lightly with the blade of a knife or a bash with the base of a saucepan
a teaspoon of peppercorns (I love white, but whatever you have)

Spice paste

1 heaped tbsp fresh turmeric, peeled and chopped fine (or 1 heaped tsp – I find dried can be quite strong and can dominate with more than this)
4 cloves garlic, peeled and finely chopped
1 inch ginger, peeled and finely chopped
as many chillies as you can handle, I used 3 birds eye chillies (it was HOT)

1 tbsp light oil
fresh coriander to finish and sea salt to season

Method

Place all of the ingredients for the broth in a stockpot and cover with water. Bring to the boil and if any foam rises to the top, scoop it off (mine had none). Reduce the heat and cook for 2.5 hours. Remove the chicken and leave to the side. Strain the stock. I don’t use the veg for the soup as most of their flavour is now in the broth, but you can eat these separately if you wish, and why not.

While the broth is cooking, grind all of the spice paste ingredients with a little sea salt (the coarse nature of the salt helps the grinding process) until you get a paste.

Remove all meat from the chicken and leave to the side, ready to add to the broth. Heat the oil over a medium heat and add the paste to the oil, stirring as you do for a couple of minutes. Add the broth and the chicken,a nd bring to the boil. Season to taste. Your soup is now ready to serve with lots of coriander on top.

Enjoy and feel better soon.

When the broth is ready.

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