I haven’t been feeling very well recently so haven’t been cooking. Today I started again with something very gentle, almost medicinal, a really tasty courgette and sweetcorn soup. Both main ingredients are reasonably delicate and result in quite a creamy soup which is a pleasure to eat and perfect for tender tums. It’s also seasonal so the ingredients are at their best having grown naturally. I have a really lovely book which I have had for over 10 years and which has travelled with me from Ireland to London and through my many house moves since – The Kitchen Pharmacy by Rose Eliott & Carlo de Pauli. Both authors have great credentials, Rose Eliot is a renowned vegetarian food writer and Carol de Pauli is the Principal of the Institute of Traditional Herbal Medicine & Aromatherapy and the Director of the British and European Osteopathic Association. Their book associates specific foods with ailments and offers recipes for these which if nothing else provide comfort. You are what you eat, a cliché but so true. For a few years, if this were explicitly true, I was in danger of turning into a bag of crisps!
Having already decided to buy a big bag of courgettes at the market I decided I’d take a look at the Kitchen Pharmacy and see how courgettes might benefit me and, sure enough, they have cooling, anti-inflammatory and anti-spasmodic properties in your intestine which makes perfect sense considering that I am recovering from a nasty intestinal infection. Your body does remember foods and other ingested items and what it likes and it doesn’t like. I think my poor tum remembered how nice courgettes were to it before and requested them. Incidentally, this is why, sometimes when something doesn’t agree with you you find out the second time you eat it not the first. I was once a physiologist (I have a degree in physiology) and know this to be true but to my shame the precise scientific detail escapes me now.