raligh (r_a_l_i_g_h) wrote in skipthekoolaid,

Feed a Cold, Feed a Flu

'Tis the season for the sniffles!

And when you're sick you tend to not want to eat, but you need to eat to build up your strength and your immune system.

When your tummy's rumblely it's best to stick to the BRAT diet - Bananas, Rice, Applesauce, and Toast. Nice and bland but with good vitamins and nutrients and fiber (well, with wholegrain rice and toast).

Another helpful aid is natural ginger ale. It should be available at your local healthfood store. This REALLY works on nausea, and is pretty tasty, too. (If a LOT stronger than carbonated ginger ale)

If you don't have stomach ailments, but still don't feel like eating much, there's always that good ol' standby - Chicken Soup.

But DON'T grab the canned stuff - not only is it loaded with sodium, but you can do it so much better, and pretty easily, too!

In fact, I just made a gallon or two in our giant pot for dinner tonight (we've got a couple sickies, recovering sickies, and soon-to-be sickies around here)

I started with the remains of one of those $5 deli roast chickens (about 50-75% of it was still left, I bought it yesterday expressly for this purpose) this way there's no worries about thawing or cooking meat.

Pulled most of the meat from the bone, chopped it, and tossed the meat AND rest of the carcus into the pot of water (boiling gets the scraps of meat off the bones and adds a surprising amount of flavor. One of my very very favorite parts of Thanksgiving is the turkey soup we make out of the leftovers and the bones. You can strain 'em out later no big deal)

Set up your food processer with the slicing blade and run some carrots and a few stalks of celery through it. (I also always pull the leaves off our celery bunches and throw them in the pot - they have good nutrients and the only way to eat it really is in soup.) I like lots of veggies (plus, they're good for you and add all those vitamins to the broth) so do a bunch.

Switch to the chopper blade and do a couple onions, some garlic (unless you have a jar of pre-minced garlic, than add a spoonful or so - Garlic is EXCELLENT for you and for fighting germs and building your immune system. Plus, you're sick. It's not like you're going anywhere and need to worry about garlic-breath, right?) and a bell-pepper or two.

NOTE: for extra flavor, it would be best to start by sauteing the bells, garlic and onions in some olive oil in the bottom of the pot you're going to make the soup in. But it works fine this way, too.

Add some parsley for flavor and nutrients (fresh parsley is an excellent source of Vitamins K, C, and A, as well as iron, folate, and beta-carotene. Dried much less so, but still good for you) and some Italian Seasoning and a little salt to taste.

If you want more fiber/filler you can also make sure you have enough broth and add some dry brown rice to the pot to cook. (MUCH better for you than noodles!)

Allow it to cook for a while and then, once carrots are softened remove bones with a slotted spoon (I use our spaghetti spoon with it's hooked edges) and add some fresh or frozen peas and corn for additional vitamins (and color! this is a very colorful and pretty soup!) If fresh they'll need to cook a little longer than frozen.

That's all there is to it. Other than scrubbing vegetables and running the food processer, it's mostly a case of dump, cover, and wait.

Then you'll have a nice big pot of comfort food du jour ... with way less salt and additives and WAY more flavor and nutrients than the storebought kind.

And if you're REALLY lucky, like me, you have warm, fresh homemade bread or biscuits to eat with it!
Tags: feed a cold, recipes, soup
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