It's that time of year again. Chances are your immune system has been shot to pieces by a combination of late nights, drinking, poor diet and maybe even getting lucky! All this lowers your tolerance to the pesky germs that people bring from all over the country and world. Without exception, this happened to myself or my flatmates every year...It's a massive party pooper.
In order to combat this menace, here are a few recipes that will sort you right out!
Chicken is full of protein, tryptophan (increase release of the happy hormone serotonin) and zinc. The chili sorts out those sinuses and also lifts your mood. The hot stock is full of vitamins which comforts and soothes that throat.
1 skinless chicken fillet
500ml chicken stock
4 cloves garlic
Thumb sized piece of fresh ginger
1 bundle ramen or 1 nest egg noodles
1 small red chili (optional)
Handful chopped Pak Choi/ dark green Asian leaf
Small handful shredded Chinese leaf or iceberg lettuce
1-2 spring onions
A couple of mushrooms
A few fresh coriander leaves
Groundnut/sunflower or vegetable oil
A few drops of sesame oil
A few drops of soy sauce
A piece of fresh lime/lemon (optional)
Cut the chicken lengthways into thin slices. Transfer to a plate. Turn it in a few drops of oil, 1 clove crushed garlic, optional squeeze of lime/lemon and chopped coriander. Set aside. Wash hands well.
Bring a pan of water to boil. Add noodles. Boil 2 minutes or till just tender. Drain. Set aside.
Tip stock into a pan. Add half the ginger, sliced and 2 cloves garlic. Bring to boil. Reduce heat to minimum immediately. Simmer for 5-10 minutes to infuse flavours. Use time to wash and prep vegetables. Remove from heat.
Brush a griddle or frying pan with oil. Put it on medium/high heat.
Add chicken strips. Cook 2 minutes or so per side till golden outside and white all through (never pink). Test with a knife. Return to heat if needed. Set aside.
Return stock to pan. Remove ginger. Add remaining ginger cut into matchsticks and the sliced garlic. Add mushrooms and green vegetables. Simmer for 3 minutes or until cooked but still textured.
Put noodles into a bowl. Add stock and vegetables. Place chicken on top. Add coriander, spring onion, chili. Add a drop of soy if you like or a drizzle sweet chili sauce. Enjoy with green tea. Eat with chopsticks/spoon.
Variation: griddle or fry slices of tofu in place of chicken
Lemon, Honey & Ginger Tea
Full of vitamin c, a sugar lift from the honey, soothing hot water and the ginger sorts your digestive system out.
2 inch piece fresh root ginger
Juice of 1 Lemon
1 tsp honey
Peel and chop ginger. Put it in a mug.
Pour in boiling water from the kettle. Let it sit for a couple of minutes to infuse.
Squeeze lemon then add juice and honey to taste. Stir. Sip slowly.