Flu season is upon us and everywhere you turn people are coughing in your face.
It is that time of year, when family members, friends and co-workers are dropping like flies. You may beginning to feel paranoid wondering when you will be hit by the latest virus and end up in bed sniffling and sneezing too. Don’t give up yet!
If someone you care about has come down with a cold or, you find yourself feeling achy and perhaps that stuffy head feeling coming on, make up a batch of this Jacked up Chicken Broth and you will be feeling back to scratch in no time.
It’s the perfect me up.
Although making your own stock from the actual chicken carcass or chicken parts is ideal who has time for that? Store bought chicken broth from a can or carton will do and with the addition of the rest of the immune boosting ingredients you won’t know what hit you. There is no direct scientific connection as to why chicken soup makes us feel so much better when we are down with a cold.
No doubt just holding that bowl of steaming broth under your nose is enough to clear your nasal congestion and the warm delicious liquid soothing your soar throat as it goes down. Those little things mean so much when we feel so horrible.
Other benefits from this jazzed up broth come from tofu, plenty of garlic and fresh ginger.
Ginger is a knotty, aromatic rhizome. It can be found in the produce section of most grocery stores. Choose sections that are firm and tight not withered or shriveled or soft at all. It is ok to break off smaller pieces and purchase what you think you will use. When ready to use, pare away the skin of only the amount you need, just before using then store the remaining piece away.
Excellent for settling an upset stomach, warding off motion sickness and aiding digestion. I find ginger ale too syrupy sweet so before heading out on a potentially stomach upsetting drive, I drop a few pieces of dried ginger into a water bottle and sip that and I am able to enjoy the ride all afternoon. Ginger also contains compounds that work like an anti -inflammatory so when you feel those first signs of achy muscles its the right time to add a little ginger to your diet.
Ginger tea is a soothing way to get your daily dose. Brew 2 thin slices of fresh gingerroot and steep in 1-2 cups of simmering water for 5 minutes. Remove the ginger before pouring water into the mug and add a little fresh lemon, if you like. Alternatively, this peppery spice is also fantastic in any number of ways. Add 1 teaspoon of fresh grated ginger to your stir fry, smoothie or morning oatmeal.
To keep the unused portion fresh, I wrap my gingerroot in a paper towel then store it in an airtight plastic bag in the vegetable drawer. Just cut off pieces as you need them. The root lasts 2- 3 weeks in the fridge but if you find you can’t use it right away it may also be stored in a similar way in the freezer and it will keep for about 2 months. Break off a knob from root and return unused portion to freezer.
Tofu, made from the curd of mashed soybeans is truly a superfood. It is naturally gluten free, vegan and easy to digest for those that are really bad off and don’t want to eat. Tofu is a terrific plant based protein with roughly 20 grams of protein per 1 cup (8oz). Although by itself, tofu is unquestionably bland, this makes it ideal for soaking up the flavor of whatever it is paired with and steeped in this flavorful broth it is just what the doctor ordered. Soft tofu is easily digestible so perfect when recovering from illness or fever and you must eat to gain strength but don’t have much appetite.
There are 3 main types of tofu sold in plastic water filled containers: silken, medium firm and extra firm. I prefer the medium firm and use that in most dishes; however, you should try them all and see which consistency you like best. Tofu is full of amino acids and an excellent source of iron and calcium. It is also great for those trying to lose weight due to the low fat and low calorie count.
Use tofu within 5-7 days of opening and save any unused portion in a air tight container submerged in water. Change the water daily to maintain maximum freshness.
Garlic has been revered for 1000s of years for its medicinal properties. This wonderfully versatile bulb can be added to just about anything although I can’t say garlic tea sounds appetizing. Yuck!
This unassuming member of the onion family is know to have antibacterial as well as anti inflammatory properties. Chopped minced or roasted and smooshed on toast it will strengthen the immune system and help prevent cold and flu. This kitchen staple has compounds that actually help to relax blood vessels and so helps to reduce high blood pressure.
Adding these few simple and inexpensive ingredients to your diet may help you recover from cold symptoms speedily or avoid getting sick in the first place. And no side effects to worry about -except perhaps some powerful garlic breath!
Please make up a batch of my jazzed up broth and let me know how quickly you recovered from your symptoms.
Jazzed Up Chicken Broth
- February 16, 2020
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- 3 c chicken broth (can or carton)
- 2 c water
- 2 quarter size slices ginger root, peeled
- 3 cloves garlic, divided
- 1/2 white onion
- 2 celery stalk with leaves
- 1 outer cabbage leaves(optional)
- 1/4 c dry egg noodles
- 1/3 block medium tofu cubed
- 1/4 c broccoli
- salt and pepper
- Step 1
- In medium sauce pan combine chicken broth, water, one whole stalk celery including all leaves, 2 cloves garlic smashed with flat side of knife, gingerroot slices, onion, cabbage leaf, if using and bring to low boil than turn down heat and simmer for at least 20 minutes
- Step 2
- Remove large vegetable pieces
- Step 3
- Bring broth to a boil, add egg noodles and cook according to package. At last minute of cooking time add 1 clove chapped garlic, 1 thinly sliced stalk celery and broccoli
- Step 4
- When noodles are done lower heat and add tofu. Taste and add more water, if necessary, and salt and pepper to taste.