If you ever felt under the weather and your mother fed you chicken soup, she must have known that chicken broth is an especially good food to eat to help you heal faster. That’s because real, homemade, slow-cooked bone broths provide easily digestible minerals, boost the immune system, and aid in digestion. It is not simply an old wive’s tale that you should eat chicken soup when you don’t feel well. It really, truly is what will help you get better faster by providing concentrated, easily absorbed nutrition to build your system back up.
The next time you’re not feeling well, drink some plain, homemade beef or chicken stock, or ask someone to make this chicken soup recipe for you.
It’s ideal if you can use already made chicken stock (see recipe) for this but store-bought chicken broth will also do. (Note: chicken stock and broth are essentially the same thing…broth is made mainly from bones, broth from mainly meat. If it’s made from bones it will have more minerals and gelatin.)
Chicken Soup with Rice and Kale
1 whole pastured chicken
1 - 2 tablespoons organic chicken soup concentrate or base
4 carrots, peeled, chopped
4 celery stalks, chopped
2 large onions, chopped
2 bay leaves
Sea salt and black pepper
1 teaspoon dried tarragon
1 cup long-grain white rice
3 cups chopped kale
Place chicken in a large soup pot. Add water to cover by 1 1/2 inches and chicken broth concentrate, or homemade chicken broth, and bay leaves. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium. Simmer partly covered, occasionally skimming off foam from surface, about 1 hour.
With a slotted spoon or tongs, carefully remove chicken from pot and set aside to cool. Add carrots, celery, and onions to the pot. Simmer for 15 minutes. Add rice and kale. Return to a simmer and cook, uncovered, until rice is tender, about 20 minutes.
Meanwhile, remove skin and bone from chicken and shred into bite-size pieces. Add at least half of the chicken back into pot (reserve remaining chicken for another use) along with the tarragon and salt and pepper to taste. Simmer another 5 minutes.