Hearty Chicken Soup is the key to winter warmth on the inside!
As the days become cooler and the nights become longer our bodies call for more cooked meals, as it is harder to digest raw food in cool weather.
It is also important to keep your body hydrated throughout the winter.
Try to minimise foods that will weaken the immune system such as sugar, processed foods and alcohol.
Meat and Fish Bones give soups great mineral nutrition
Meat and fish bone broths are a great way to gain the nutrition needed to sustain you throughout the winter. These types of soups have been used almost universally in traditional cuisines but have almost disappeared from our dinner plates. They have been used as a source of dense nutrition and in some cultures, as a stable diet.
Properly prepared meat stocks are extremely nutritious as they contain the minerals from bones, cartilage, marrow and vegetables as electrolytes, which are easily assimilated. Drawing the minerals, such as calcium, magnesium and potassium out of the bones allows a nutrient rich soup.
A Hearty Chicken Soup has many health benefits
A good chicken soup can be valuable for many reasons:
- cleansing your liver
- stabilising your blood sugar
- gelatine from the bones has an anti-inflammatory effect
- feeds, repairs and calms the mucous lining of the small intestine
- soothes your nerves
- reduces allergies
- improves digestion
- relaxes and gives strength
- 2 chicken frames from the butcher (organic chicken is best)
- 2 – 3 carrots depending on size
- 1 potato
- 1 parsnip
- 1 onion
- 3 cloves of garlic
- 3 stems of celery
- Himalayan salt
- ½ bunch of parsley
- Olive oil for frying
- Wash the chicken frames
- Chop ingredients into large chunks – including chicken frames
- Turn on the stove to a medium heat
- Once hot, gently pan fry the ingredients including celery leaves – the more you put in there the better it will taste
- Add approximately 2 litres of water depending on size of pot
- Bring to the boil, remove any natural scum with a slotted spoon
- Turn to a low heat, cover and leave cooking for at least 4 hours, the longer you leave it on the better it will taste. It is best to leave it on the whole day but make sure the heat is very low and check it regularly to make sure that it is not boiling or the liquid evaporating too quickly.
- Turn off heat, strain and discard the spent vegetables and chicken frames.
You can use the resulting chicken broth as the base for your soup:
- Add more fresh vegetables and even poach some fresh chicken pieces which can then be shredded into the soup.
- Add some fine rice noodles or coconut milk for an Asian style soup with ginger, galangal, spring onion and coriander. Laska is one possibility here.
- Add some rice and allow it to gently cook through absorbing all the flavours. Allow to cool. Very gently add 2 eggs whisked together with lemon juice and continue to whisk into the cooled soup. When you heat it again gently it will thicken slightly and turn white – don’t let it boil. This becomes the traditional Greek Egg and Lemon Soup.
These are just a few ideas – the rest is up to you!
This recipe is perfect to make in big batches and can be frozen to use later. It is important to use organic bones for this bone broth to avoid excess chemical exposure.