I identify winters with chicken soup largely. Or may be I am in a chicken soup phase right now :-)
Not that I don't like vegetable soups or seafood soups but chicken soup is more a common occurrence in my kitchen. Easy meals are made of chicken soup in winters and takes care of that cold nose unfailingly. Yes, I felt my nose getting colder on my evening walk yesterday.
We didn't see the sun for the last 3 days and it rained early morning today. Soup was on my mind and I did make a soup for myself. It was a lentil soup with mushrooms and garlic and a Haaq soup with rice for the last 2 days. You see the soup season is making me quite happy. This chicken soup was made 2 weeks back when I had a severe cold. A special chicken soup to feed a cold and get well fast.
The only grudge is, you might have to cook it by yourself if you are the one and only cook in the family. You know you feel like being pampered with a nice chicken soup when you have that kind of cold and running nose. May be you are lucky, may be you are like me who make other people feel lucky. I feel cooking is an intimate thing we do for our loved ones, some people just don't have this skill but that's okay. Cooking for our own selves isn't that bad either. I feel more connected to food, nature and Earth when I cook for myself, almost like a meditative activity.
Anyway, I have a nice naturally grown organic turmeric powder that is so aromatic you feel like keeping it closer to your nose. No it doesn't smell like any store bought turmeric which can leave you nauseous if you take a closer whiff. You can find raw turmeric and use that for the soup if you wish or try and find a good organic turmeric that has all the essential oils intact. This soup has a dose of the best turmeric you can get. Anti inflammatory turmeric, not a colouring agent.
chicken stock 2 cups (bony pieces pressure cooked with a bit of ginger and spring onion, may be a stalk of celery too, cool and skim the fat, the fat can be used to saute the vegetables for soup)
chopped button mushrooms 2/3 cup
chopped red onions 1/2 cup
chopped green chillies large variety 1/3 cup (or use one hot green chilly and rest green bell pepper)
chopped garlic 2 tsp
pinch of garlic powder
1/2 tsp of dry ginger powder
freshly milled pepper to taste (keep it hot)
ghee 2 tsp if there is no fat skimmed from the chicken stock
Heat the ghee or chicken fat with garlic and a pinch of salt in a pan. Add the onions and green chillies as soon as the garlic starts sizzling. Saute till soft.
Add the chopped mushrooms, freshly milled pepper and turmeric, garlic and ginger powders all together and saute till the mushrooms get sweaty and then start absorbing the liquids. This is the time to add the chicken stock and simmer for about 5 minutes. Add a little water if required.
You might like to blend the soup but I would recommend having it as it is. The soup makes a very flavorful chunky soup meal that you would want to have slowly, absorbing all the flavors and aromas through all your senses. Even if you have a blocked nasal tract.
The vitamin C rich green chillies or bell peppers if you use, the red onions, the ginger, the garlic, the turmeric and the chicken stock itself, everything in the soup is there to make you feel great even if your body is sick. Oh wait, the sickness will be gone instantly believe me.
See how the soup looks a bit different than you are used to. It might look like a curry to some but do not go by the looks of it. The soup is far from being a curry and had all the trappings of a great chicken soup. That unmistakable aroma of a chicken soup and that lightness that a clear soup has. All intact.
Are you trying this soup? Please let me know if you do. I eagerly wait for feedback whether it is in the comment section here, on facebook page or on twitter.