I am a big fan of soup. Something about a home made bowl of goodness just makes me happy. I experiment with soups often, and I can’t lie, I have had this for breakfast every day this week (full disclosure: also had it for lunch twice).
I started with my stock. A rich and nutritious broth is so handy to have on hand. I have been making a big pot every week, and use the broth through the week for soups and quick nourishing snacks. Broth made by simmering bones (bone broth) are rich in a variety of important nutrients—such as calcium, magnesium, chondroitin, glucosamine, and arginine. The gelatin in the broth is amazing for bones, joints, hair and nail health. It also supports the health of your gut, and bone broth can be very helpful in healing the gut lining. A bowl of chicken soup is a classic recommendation for cold sufferers, and has been found to actually inhibit viruses and increase immunity. Keeping broth on hand is an excellent way to increase your consumption of nutrient dense food that is quick and easy to use in your day to day cooking.
This is what went into my stock pot:
- A small, whole chicken (antibiotic, hormone free) or 2-3 lbs of bones
- 2 large carrots, peeled and cut in half
- 2 onions, cut in halves
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 piece of kombu (sea vegetable, sold dry, buy it at health food stores)
- 2 tbsp oat straw
- 10 whole peppercorns
- 2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
The kombu is an amazing source of iodine. We don’t need a lot of iodine, but when we lack it our thyroid function is inhibited. Adding kombu to simmered dishes is a great way to get iodine in our diets. Oat straw is high in calcium and other minerals. Don’t leave out the apple cider vinegar. It doesn’t impact the flavour of the stock but it does help to pull the minerals and goodness from the bones.
Let this simmer gently for 12-24 hours. Cool it and skim fat, then strain it through a fine sieve. Voila. I store it in mason jars in the fridge and use it as needed.
An easy and super nutritious way to use the broth is to simply heat up a portion, and when at a boil, add an egg (slightly beaten) to the hot broth – like egg drop soup. Pour this over a big hand full of fresh baby greens. You can add a little salt or a little tamari as well. I love it with kimchi. This is a warming breakfast or snack. You could also add a scoop of cooked brown rice to make a more substantial meal (cooked brown rice is another nutrient dense food that is great to keep on hand in the fridge).