Really easy soup to help fight the flu

really simple ingredients Photo: Donna P Feldman

really simple ingredients
Photo: Donna P Feldman

The flu has been rampaging across the country this winter, and finally hit my house last week.  Times like these, you just want to feel better, so the question becomes: what can I eat that will help?

First off, there are no nutritional supplements known to “cure” the flu or any other viral infection.  Good nutrition can certainly help you fight off or recover quickly from an infection, while a junky unbalanced diet can do exactly the opposite.  It’s funny to hear people claim “I took [ x ] and my cold went away.”   All colds do go away eventually.

What about food?  It goes without saying, you need to stay hydrated, with water, herbal tea, bottled water or pure fruit juices.   You probably won’t have much appetite, but yogurt would be a reasonable choice, since the probiotics can help enhance immune function.

The flu puts chicken soup on the food radar screen.  And you don’t necessarily need Mom in the kitchen making you a big pot of homemade soup.  Here’s a way to throw together a really easy and quick soup to help you deal with the flu.

Gourmet version photo: Donna P Feldman

Gourmet version
photo: Donna P Feldman

Gourmet Version:

  • 2 cups homemade chicken, turkey or vegetable stock, made by boiling chicken parts, or turkey carcass or large chunks of a variety of vegetables, covered in water, for several hours.  This stock should be so thick that the stock gels when cooled in the refrigerator.
  • fresh-squeezed juice of 1/2 lemon
  • 1 TB fresh chopped garlic
  • salt to taste (if you’ve got fancy salt, might as well use it)
  • pinch of cayenne pepper, or to taste, depending on your tolerance for hot pepper
  • optional: 1/3 cup chopped fresh cilantro

Really Easy Version:

  • 2 cups commercial chicken or vegetable broth, without added salt or MSG or other flavor enhancers.  There are several varieties available in grocery stores now, in shelf-stable packaging.  It’s easy to keep this on hand.
  • 1-1/2 TB bottled lemon juice
  • 1 TB chopped garlic
  • salt to taste
  • cayenne pepper to taste
  • optional: pinch of dried oregano or basil

No chopping or food preparation involved.  Put it all together in a pot and heat thoroughly.


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