• Chicken soup may contain a number of substances with beneficial medicinal activity including an anti-inflammatory mechanism that could ease the symptoms of upper respiratory tract infections, according to a new study. (Science Daily)
  • Although many foods are considered to be healthy due to their individual blends of vitamins and minerals, certain meals are thought to have more beneficial effects than others. Chicken soup is an example of a food that is traditionally thought to be a remedy for colds and other ailments. In addition to that possibility, the ingredients in chicken soup can promote general health benefits.
  • Before chicken soup was for the soul, it was used by mothers everywhere as the best course to treat physical maladies of all types (although it’s best known to remedy the common cold). But what is it about chicken soup that makes it such a health-booster?Well, it’s no magic potion in this day and age, but it may as well be. Chicken soup has several properties that make it useful in the treatment of certain illnesses:
    • Cleansing. “Plenty of fluids” is often advised when you’re ill. A body full of attacking allergens (like a virus) and battling antibodies needs to be flushed in order to get healthy. To that effect, the abundant broth in chicken soup performs aptly.
    • Disinfecting. Chicken soup is generally fairly salty (with lower-sodium versions), so that when it goes down your throat it acts in much the same way as gargling warm salt water. In other words, it removes bacteria in the throat, mouth, and tonsils.
    • Clears sinuses. Much like other warm liquids (for example, tea), it can help to clear the sinuses with steam.
    • Strengthening. The lean protein in chicken and nutrients from added vegetables work to bolster your strength when your body is feeling drained of energy.



Mmmm ~ chicken soup.





V’s Thai-Inspired Chicken & Rice Soup

  • 1 lb ground chicken (or turkey), or leftover roasted chicken, shredded
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 5-6 cups good quality chicken stock (homemade if available)
  • 3 T fresh ginger, minced or finely shredded
  • 1 T vegetable oil
  • 1-2 small red Thai chillies, whole for milder flavor; minced for SPICY
  • 2 T coconut cream, optional
  • 3 scallions (spring onion)
  • 2 cups hot, steamed rice
  • 1 T brown sugar
  • 1/2 English cucumber, sliced into 1/4 inch pieces
  • juice of 1 lime + lime wedges to serve
  • 3 T fresh cilantro to serve

Heat oil in large stock pot; simmer garlic, ginger and chili on low heat until sweet perfume fills the kitchen (about 3 minutes); turn heat to medium, add chicken, brown, stirring often to keep garlic from burning. Add coconut cream, brown sugar, chicken stock and lime. Lower heat, simmer about 10 minutes; add sliced cucumber. Prepare bowls by scooping about 1/3 cup rice into bottom of bowl; ladle soup over top of rice; sprinkle scallions and cilantro over top, serve with a wedge of lime on the side for additional flavor. For spicy food lovers, serve with additional minced chillies on the side.


steamed buns





Chinese Steamed Buns

  • 1 package dried yeast, or 2 1/2 tsp
  • 1 cup lukewarm water
  • 4 1/2 cups flour (I used mixture of cake and unbleached all-purpose)
  • 1/4 cup sugar + 1 T
  • 2 tablespoons Crisco or vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup boiling water
  • 2 tablespoons sesame seed oil
Dissolve yeast in lukewarm water with 1 T sugar; add 1 cup of flour, mix thoroughly; Cover with cloth and let rest for 30 minutes .
Dissolve remaining sugar and vegetable oil in 1/2 cup boiling water; stir well; cool until lukewarm. Pour into yeast mixture; add 3 1/2 cups flour.
Knead dough on lightly floured board until smooth. Put into extra large, greased bowl in a warm place. Cover with damp cloth. Let rise until double in bulk, about 2 hours.

Divide into 2 portions. Remove first portion and knead 2 minutes; repeat with second piece; roll each into rope about 12 inches long and 2 inches wide. Cut into 12 pieces each. Line a baking sheet with 3×3 inch squares of waxed paper or cabbage leaves. Place buns either on waxed paper or cabbage leaves lightly sprayed with non-stick spray. (The buns can be frozen at this point. Place on baking sheet on pieces of waxed paper. Place in freezer. When dough is hard to the touch, place in freezer bags. To use, allow to thaw at room temperature, proceed as directed.)

Allow to rest at least 30 minutes or until doubled in size.
Heat water to boiling, place buns steamer basket; cover and steam 10-15 minutes. Remove lid at once to prevent “blistering” of bun. Do not crowd buns ~ you may have to do 2-3 batches. These buns can be filled with sweet or savory filling of your choice ~ Toren likes them just how they are!

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