Thursday, 16 June 2011

Asian Style Chicken Soup for a Poorly Husband

The love of my life has got himself a chest infection so, although I was going to make a chicken and mushroom pie, I decided that he needed something a bit more nutritious to make him feel better: chicken soup.

I chose to make an asian style one partly because of what was in the fridge, but also because it's easier to incorporate the ingredients that I've been taught will boost the immune system and soothe symptoms. After I'd made it, I thought it would be fun to find out whether the ingredients that I use when I'm ill actually do any good; I'm really glad I did as it's pretty fascinating to read that the remedies grandparents, parents, friends and books have taught you are often supported by real research.

First I chopped up an insanely large amount of onions, garlic, celery and root ginger. Garlic contains allicin which is both antibacterial, anti-fungal and believed to be anti-inflammatory and antioxidant too. Onions have a reputation for helping a sore throat and contain quercetin, which is believed to be anti-inflammatory.

I've always thought of ginger as an essential treatment for colds, 'flu, chest infections and pretty much any common ill. I looked it up and this is because it contains gingerols, which are antibacterial and reduce fever. I love to make hot lemon, ginger and honey tea when I'm under the weather, and now I know why it makes me feel better.

So, I cooked these in a little (antioxidant) olive oil before adding a pint of chicken stock, a pint of beef stock and the shredded remains of Sunday's chicken, which I have read reduces mucus production, although it wasn't mentioned in the wiki. I also added three star anise which contains, fascinatingly, shikimic acid - one of the primary ingredients in Tamiflu! I left these to come to a simmer and busied myself preparing the antioxidant sweetcorn, vitamin-c filled pak choi and vitamin and mineral rich mushrooms. When the soup was bubbling, I added the sweetcorn and, after a few minutes more, the mushrooms.

When these were cooked almost through I added the pak choi, and once that was cooked I mixed in a chopped red chilli and fresh coriander. Coriander contains antioxidants and is antibacterial. Chillies contain lots of vitamin-c. Also, although this wasn't listed anywhere in the wiki as a benefit, I also think that the way it makes your nose run is helpful, cleaning out the sinuses and making you feel less congested. I've read, outside of wiki, that capsaicin is an expectorant, thinning out the mucus so that you can get rid of it.

Finally, I seasoned the soup with a very tiny amount of rice wine vinegar. It tasted great and felt good to eat, so hopefully it's helped!


No comments:

Post a Comment