On a day like today where everyone is getting sick and I’m starting to feel run down chicken soup, or Jewish penicillin (as Jamie Oliver likes to call it), is a lifesaver. Chicken soup is a staple in my freezer throughout the cooler Canadian months. There is something about chicken soup that is so healing and nourishing. I always make a large batch that will last a while and when I’m feeling sick or run down, chicken soup is at my rescue.
I like to try a new recipe each time that I make a big batch. This time I followed Jamie Oliver’s Jewish Penicillin soup. It turned out great and will definitely be added to my chicken soup rotation.
The benefits of chicken soup are numerous:
- Reduces the number of white blood cells, which are the cells that cause flu and cold symptoms
- Is very high in the anti-inflammatory amino acids glycine and proline
- The amino acid glycine found in bone broth can be very calming
- The glucosamine in bone broth can actually stimulate the growth of new collagen, repair damaged joints and reduce pain and inflammation
- 1 x 2.5 kg chicken, preferably free-range or organic
- 3 medium onions , peeled and roughly chopped
- 3 carrots , peeled and roughly chopped
- 3 sticks of celery , trimmed and roughly chopped
- 4 cloves of garlic , peeled
- 4 fresh bay leaves
- a few sprigs of fresh thyme
- sea salt
- freshly ground black pepper
- 1 small bunch of parsley
- 1 small bunch of fresh dill
How to Make:
- Rinse your chicken in cold water, pat it dry with kitchen paper and put it into your biggest pot. Cover with cold water to come about 8 to 10cm above the chicken. Bring to a boil, then turn the heat down and simmer for 30 minutes. Skim the froth off the top of the chicken.
- Add the onions, carrots, celery, garlic cloves, bay leaves and thyme sprigs, and season with a good pinch of salt. Bring everything back to the boil, then turn the heat down and leave it to simmer for 1 hour.
- When the soup has been simmering for an hour and a half, use tongs to carefully transfer the chicken to a roasting pan. Leave to cool, uncovered, for a few minutes. Remove the soup from the heat and strain it through your biggest sieve or colander. Pull out the decent-looking bits of veg and put these back into the soup, getting rid of anything else.
- When your chicken has cooled enough to handle, use two forks to shred the meat off the bone. Pile it on to a plate and get rid of the skin and bones. Pick the leaves from your parsley and roughly chop them with the dill. Add all the shredded chicken to the soup, along with the chopped herbs, and warm through for 3 minutes. Season with salt and pepper if needed.