My two kids, myself and my husband all got colds last week (typical). Seems to happen to us often. One kid gets it, sick for two days, next kid gets it, adults get it, etc. And, of course, as soon as we’re all better, the first one who caught it starts the cycle all over again. Good times.
So, I wanted to cook something for everyone that would be easy on sore throats, delicious and contain some immunity building/cold fighting qualities. For some reason, chicken soup in Florida doesn’t feel quite right to me. I also like to make vegetarian items when possible.
- Garlic contains allicin, a sulfuric compound that produces potent antioxidants when it decomposes. Leeks have similar benefits.
- Carrots and sweet potatoes are rich in beta-carotene. When we eat these foods, our bodies convert this organic compound into vitamin A, which is essential for maintaining a strong immune system. Vitamin A is especially important for colds, as it keeps the mucous membranes that line our nose and throat—one of the body’s first lines of defense—healthy and functioning properly.
- Ginger is great for aches, pains, and nausea, just in case the cold was thinking of turning into a flu. It also is an overall immunity booster.
- Celery is an important food source of conventional antioxidant nutrients, including vitamin C, beta-carotene, and manganese.
- Cinnamon is a warming expectorant, used to gently reduce congestion and phlegm in the lungs, and dry up runny noses.
- Tumeric – recent years have seen an explosion of research into curcumin, an antioxidant found in turmeric. Studies have shown it has anti-inflammatory, antiviral, antibacterial, antifungal and anticancer activities.
So, taking that into account, I decided to make start with a Carrot-Ginger soup recipe I found on “Mountain Mama Cooks”. I used the freshest and most local ingredients I could find (the ginger and herbs were local). It was easy, DELISH, and the kids & hubby wolfed it down! In fact, I had to do a second batch. I modified a bit- I love using coconut milk, see my version below.
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 2 lbs carrots, grated
- 3 leeks, chopped & washed thoroughly
- 4 stalks celery, diced
- 1 small sweet potato, peeled & diced
- 3 tablespoons fresh peeled & grated ginger (If you didn’t know – I had to google – you peel fresh ginger simply by taking a spoon and “Scraping” off the skin. )
- 8 cups vegetable stock
- 2 oz heavy cream
- 2 oz canned Coconut Milk
- salt and pepper
- 1 tsp Cinnamon
- 1 tsp Tumeric
photo courtesy Mountain Mama Cooks
- Melt butter in a large stock pot. Add carrots, leeks, celery, sweet potato and ginger. Cook on medium-low for roughly 15 minutes until vegetables are soft.
- Add vegetable stock, Tumeric, and Cinnamon and turn heat to medium high. When soup starts to simmer, turn heat down to low and let soup simmer for 30 minutes (I like to cover because I want to keep all the vitamins in, but you don’t have to). Turn heat off and let it cool down a bit.
- When soup is cooled, use an emersion blender (LIFE CHANGING! And only $30) or a large blender in batches to smooth soup.
- When ready to serve, add cream and coconut milk and season with salt and pepper. Keep on low to keep it warm if you’d desire.