Saturday, December 27, 2008
I have to admit, I got sick for the first time in a year and a half. That's actually pretty impressive, as I used to be Queen of Illness. I either had a cold, sore throat, or the flu several times a year. As soon as I started eating right, and using whole foods to keep my body healthy, I noticed that I was able to fight off sickness before it even took hold. But, I've been bad in December. Between the holidays, and my MFA applications, I haven't had much time to prepare food the way I like. I managed to stay healthy for most of December, but flying to Florida was the nail in the coffin. The constant sugar binges, and change in temperature and air pressure (from the flight) knocked me out.
For four days I battled a low grade fever, congestion, and a very sore throat, without any of my healing foods at my disposal. As soon as I arrived back in Massachusetts though, I started taking my echinacea, honey, and ginger. I also decided to make a garlic soup, sincegarlic has great anti-viral, antibiotic properties. Not only was it delicious, but I think it may have given me the added boost I needed to feel like myself again (which I do! - I just finished an hour of power yoga.) This soup only costs about $5.50 (comparable to the Minestrone), which equals out to less than a dollar a serving!
2 medium onions
16 cloves of garlic, peeled and mashed
2 stalks of celery, chopped
4 T butter
6 cups of chicken stock (or combo with water)
2 medium potatoes, washed and cut up
crushed peppercorns or pepper
3 yellow squash, sliced
sea salt or fish sauce
I decided to roast my garlic first, which gave it a nice flavor. I just turned the toaster oven on 300 degrees and let two heads of garlic heat up while I prepared the rest of the soup. After about 15 - 20 minutes, the cloves were slightly opened, and I just scooped them out with a fork.
I used my new food processor to chop the celery and onions, and sauteed them in the butter. If you don't roast the garlic, you should throw it in at this time too. Otherwise, add garlic after soup boils.
When vegetables are soft, add chicken stock and potatoes, and bring to a boil and skim.
Simmer the soup, covered, until the potatoes are soft.
Add the squash and simmer uncovered 10 minutes or until squash is tender.
Now comes the fun part - puree soup with a hand held blender. You can always add water if it is too thick. If you don't have a blender stick, you can use a regular blender, or a food processor, or just eat it chunky!
Add creme fraiche and seasonings to your liking!