Thursday, October 8, 2009

Recipe: Chicken Noodle Soup For Flu Emergencies

On Monday, I awoke with a crushing case of the flu. Head stuffed with cement and couldn't get out of bed kind of flu, the real deal. But in a moment of over-the-counter-drug induced faux clarity, I hobbled to the kitchen and assembled some chicken noodle soup with what I had on hand and had hot, piping soup within an hour.

The key is to put the garlic in toward the end of cooking. That way, you're destroying less of the array of medicinal qualities attributed to it, including killing bacteria. I also used a big handful of herbs from my containers on the patio for flavor. If you don't have them, substitute with dried mixed herbs. I also only had mixed frozen vegetables on hand, but you can use fresh if you've got them. And use whatever chicken you've got on hand. I had a breast with rib on from breaking down chickens, even though I've called for the more populist boneless, skinless variety below.

Chicken soup for emergencies

2 tablespoons olive oil
½ yellow onion, chopped (about 1 ½ cups)
3 stalks celery, chopped (about 3/4 cup)
½ cup (125 ml) white wine or vermouth
2 quarts chicken stock (may use half water)
Large bouquet garni (a fistful mix of parsley, fresh oregano, thyme)
OR 1 tablespoon dried mixed herbs
½ teaspoon salt, a few cranks of pepper
1 large boneless, skinless chicken breast
1 16 oz. package frozen mixed vegetables
4 garlic cloves, minced
2 ounces (50 g) wide noodles
2 teaspoons minced fresh parsley (optional)

In a large Dutch oven, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion, and celery and cook until soft. Add the white wine and let reduce by one-half. Add the stock and/or water. Heat through. Add the chicken and herbs. Bring to a low boil, then reduce heat and simmer, partially covered, for 40 minutes. (This will effectively poach the chicken.)

Remove the chicken from the soup with tongs. Add the frozen vegetables and simmer in the liquid for a few moments while the chicken cools. After about five minutes, add in the noodles. Break the meat into bite-sized chunks and add to the pot after about a few minutes, once the noodles are halfway cooked, along with the chopped garlic. Simmer for another few minutes or until ready to eat, adding salt and and pepper as needed. Before serving, stir in the parsley. Makes about eight servings, or enough for a couple days with the flu. (Below, the big ass bouquet garni)



Blogger Mark said...

Hope you feel better. We're on the same wavelength. I felt sick yesterday and made a chicken soup as well. Funny how we all gravitate to what "mom" did when we were sick as kids. Get well soon.

October 9, 2009 at 7:48 AM  
Blogger Larry said...

Now you're SURE it was the garlic's medicinal qualitites, and not the white wine's that led to your speedy recovery, Ms. Flinn??

... hope you're feeling better!

October 9, 2009 at 9:59 AM  
Blogger Ann said...

I always keep individual frozen containers of our family chicken and leek soup (with thyme)for emergencies. I once took a styrofoam container of Emergency Chicken Soup Units to my daughter in NYC. It's our personal miracles everytime!

October 12, 2009 at 1:16 PM  
Anonymous Jenny said...

I tried this and it was GREAT! Thanks, Kathleen!

October 14, 2009 at 10:21 AM  
Blogger mvmaithai said...

Can't believe you were sick and still went to work (make the soup and take pictures!) to give us this lovely posting. Thanks, and hope you feel better now.

Whenever I buy rotiserrie chicken from the supermarket, I eat all dark meat, and remove all the white meat for sandwiches or salad for another meal. I reserve the bones to make soup. It's easy and delicious!

October 14, 2009 at 1:32 PM  
Blogger Spinnybunnyboo said...

Amazing ... made it today as the govt. in Canada does not have any flu vaccine of any kind for ANYONE ... I am going to eat this every darn day if I have to!

October 16, 2009 at 2:56 PM  
Anonymous Gigi in Ann Arbor said...

Home sick with the flu, I tried this soup today with the last withering bits of fresh herbs from my container pots on my Michigan porch. It was fantastic! Thanks so much. I'm going to go back to bed now.

October 22, 2009 at 7:13 PM  
Anonymous Cheyna said...

Love all your recipes. This one was great!! Made it today! Post more!

October 25, 2009 at 4:42 PM  
Anonymous Shayla G. said...

This was GREAT. Made it for my husbnad who is sick with the last bits of leftover sage, parsley and rosemary from Thanksgiving. The herbs make all the difference,and putting the garlic in later adds a great flavor note. Nice! Thank you!

December 14, 2009 at 12:14 AM  
Blogger bathmate said...

really a wonderful blog...


December 26, 2009 at 1:13 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

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January 31, 2010 at 7:36 PM  

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