Chicken soup, known as “Jewish penicillin,” is an essential recipe for all grandmothers and mothers to have in their bag of tricks. It’s delicious, and bone broth is touted for its restorative powers. I used to look forward to preparing this sweet soup with my grandmother Beauty as a kid, and now as a mom I love preparing this memorable dish for my kids.
Instructing my 11-year-old daughter Sofia to throw in a biessel of this and a bissel of that, she blurted out, “When we cook from Beauty’s recipe cards, it is like she is here with us.” Smelling the simmering soup, I knew what she said to be true.
Yield 12 servings
1 (3½-pound) chicken, cut into 8 pieces, most of the skin removed
4 medium carrots, peeled and cut into ¼-inch pieces
4 ribs celery, cut into ¼-inch pieces
2 medium parsnips, peeled and cut into ¼-inch pieces
1 large sweet potato, peeled and diced
1 medium yellow onion, quartered
4 cloves garlic, chopped
1 (1-inch) piece fresh ginger, finely grated
A handful of fresh dill, chopped
2 teaspoons ground turmeric
Freshly ground black pepper
1) Add 4 cups of cold water to an 8-quart stockpot; set over high heat and bring to a boil. Add the chicken and cook until foam comes to the top. Spoon off the foam, reduce the heat to medium-low, and add the carrots, celery, parsnips, sweet potato, onion, garlic, ginger and dill. Simmer the soup for 2 hours and add 8 cups of cold water, 1 cup at a time, as needed. As the soup cooks, the liquid will evaporate and the soup will thicken. Check the soup every 30 minutes to remove any film that rises to the top.
2) Stir in the turmeric, salt, pepper and garlic powder to taste, and remove the pot from the heat.
3) Remove the chicken and the vegetables from the soup, and pull the chicken meat off the bones. Ladle the broth into bowls and add the desired amount of chicken and vegetables to each.
Dawn Lerman is a nutritionist, founder of Magnificent Mommies, and bestselling author of “My Fat Dad: A Memoir of Food, Love and Family, With Recipes.” Follow her on Twitter, @dawnlerman