Winter Prep

Before it gets really cold I like to stock pile a series of ginger based cold and flu cures.

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This is literally just chopped ginger put in honey. I let it soak in like this in the fridge and use a teaspoon full in hot water to make a really throat soothing, sinus clearing tea. The juice flows out of the ginger, thinning the honey and making a sort of syrup.

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This is my Ginger Soup, loosely based on Hot and Sour soup and something I’ve been inflicting on sick friends since undergrad. Of course as its my secret remedy there’s no one to make it for me when I’m the one whose sick so I like to keep two tubs of it in my freezer (that’s all I have room for).

You will need;

  • One large thumb of ginger
  • Four spring onions or one white onion
  • Six cloves of garlic
  • Two chilis (less if you like spice less)
  • Oil of your choice
  • Rice vinegar (I’m using Chianking)
  • Soy Sauce
  • Stock of your choice

This is really easy to make and I like to use it as the base for a lot of soups. All you have to do is dice the vegetables and brown then in the oil, then add everything else and cook until the flavours are dispersed.

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Italian-Chinese fusion white bean soup

This should serve two, more if you pad it out with more pasta and extra vegetables. I think broccoli and finely diced carrots would make a good addition to this, as would chicken if you want it to add meat.

 

Two measures of vegetable stock

One large piece of ginger

Six garlic cloves

Four spring onions 

One spoon salt chilis (optional)

About 15g of coriander leaf

One whole red pepper or half a sweet red pointed pepper

One can of white beans

Olive oil

Soy Sauce 

Pasta (I chose spaghetti)

 

Dice the spring onion, garlic, ginger and the red pepper and fry them in olive oil at a medium heat with the salt chilies (you can substitute any chili you like if you don’t have them, or leave them out if you prefer milder flavours) until they start to caramalise. Then add two fully diluted measures of vegetable stock and bring to the boil before adding the coriander leaf, can of white beans and soy sauce to taste. Let the beans simmer for ten minutes or longer if you feel the broth needs longer to infuse and then add the pasta, I chose spaghetti which gives the broth a further twelve minutes to infuse. Its a wonderful, gingery, coriander based broth that I think would make a great cold cure. 

 

Hot and Sour Soup

This is a great cold cure because it works to alleviate the systems and boost the immune system at once. Its also really delicious.

 

For the Broth:

 

Two measures stock (I prefer vegetable, chicken is traditional)

Six spring onions

Two inches of ginger

Six cloves of garlic

Two tablespoons of soy sauce

Two tablespoons of rice vinegar

Chili, black pepper and white pepper to taste

One stalk of lemongrass (optional)

One tea spoon five spice or two whole star anise (optional)

 

For the Body:

Chicken, pork, eggs, bamboo shoots, shitaki mushrooms, white mushrooms, bean sprouts, carrots, cabbage, rice noodles,

 

Dice the garlic and spring onions small and cut the ginger into strips before adding them to the stock, then add the other seasonings and simmer until the flavours have melded. While adding the chili and peppers to taste remember that this is supposed to be a spicy soup so add as much as you can tolerate. This is delicious as a broth to be eaten alongside a meal or if you can’t stomach solid food when ill but if you want a more hearty meal from it you can add any of the ingredients listed under for the body. Slice the meat and vegetables into fine strips and beat the egg as you add it to the soup to get fine ribbons all through it.