Tasty and Nourishing Chicken Soup

One thing that will help you weather any storm is nurturing healthy eating habits. A homemade chicken soup is an essential foundation for this. It's also a great way to disguise a hearty boost of protein to give you all the building blocks for preparing to receive and grow a baby. 

The following recipe is extremely nourishing to the entire body. It's great for making in large batches and storing in the freezer. This is a two-step recipe, so before making the soup, you must make the stock (broth). You can make a big batch of broth and store some of it in the freezer to use in other recipes as well.

TO MAKE THE STOCK:

Ingredients:

  • 1 medium whole chicken including neck, gizzards, etc. (Go for organic, free-range chicken. It's better for you and better for the chicken.)
  • 4 quarts cold filtered water
  • 2 T apple cider vinegar
  • 4-5 T extra virgin coconut oil
  • 2-4 chicken feet* (optional, but important for added nutrients & taste)
  • 3 carrots, scrubbed and coarsely chopped
  • 3 stalks of celery, coarsely chopped
  • 2 medium size white or yellow onions, coarsely chopped
  • 4 inches of ginger, grated
  • 4 cloves of garlic, chopped
  • 2-3 T Celtic sea salt (substitute unrefined sea salt if unavailable)
  • 1 bunch parsley

After rinsing and drying your chicken, cut off the wings and legs and anything from inside the cavity. Place the chicken and all its pieces in the largest stainless steel pot you can find. Add the water, vinegar, salt, coconut oil, and all the vegetables except the parsley. Let stand 30 minutes to 1 hour. Bring to a boil, and periodically skim any bits from the top. Reduce heat and simmer for about 8 hours. The longer you cook the stock, the richer, more flavorful, and more nutritious it will be. About 20 minutes before finishing the stock, add the parsley. This will impart additional mineral ions into the broth.

Remove all the chicken pieces with a slotted spoon. Let cool and then separate chicken meat, set aside in fridge. Strain the stock into a large bowl or jar and and store in fridge (or anything you're not planning on using right now, seal in bags in the freezer).

TO MAKE THE SOUP:

Ingredients:

You can substitute any vegetables or herbs that are in season such as:

  • Collard greens, chopped
  • Kale, chopped
  • Carrots, cut in thick slices
  • Celery, chopped
  • Broccoli, cut into pieces
  • Baked squash, cut into large pieces
  • Oregano
  • Thyme

Fill a very large stainless steal pot with stock, cut up vegetables/herbs of your choice, and chicken meat. Bring to a boil and then remove from heat immediately. Use ladle to dish out soup into containers for storage. You will want to do this right away, as the soup will continue to cook in the large pot (and you will spare the vegetables from being overcooked).Store excess in freezer, then reheat and season to serve!

TIP: For a Thai twist: add coconut milk and fresh-squeezed lemon or lime just before serving.

Recipe adapted from: Fallon, Sally. Nourishing Traditions. Washington DC:  NewTrends Publishing, Inc, 1999. Rubin, N.M.D., C.N.C., Jordan. Patient Heal Thyself. Topanga: Freedom Press, 2003.