I’m sick. And so’s Eric. *cough, sniff*
We’ve got feverish-coughing-sneezing-and-hacking colds.
*hack, sniff, achoo!*
A good, old-fashioned snotty-stuffy-headed cold. And there are certain things one does when one is Cuban (or happens to live with a Cuban) and has a cold.
Right now I’m trying to build up my Cuban Immunity Arsenal* (*or C.I.A.) and gathering what I need. And the first thing I need, is Homemade Cuban Chicken Soup.
Here’s that recipe:
Sopa de Pollo (Cuban-style Chicken Soup)
- 1 bunch green onions, chopped up
- 1 small bunch of cilantro, chopped up into small bits (unless you love cilantro, go mellow on this, but don’t skip it.)
- 1 Tbsp. cumin
- 3 Tbsp. olive oil ( for sautéing)
- 3 Tbsp. white flour
- 8 cups of chicken stock (2- 32 oz. containers)
- 8 chicken thighs (keep the skin and bones on for now, they add to the flavor)
- 1 yuca peeled and cut into 1 inch cubes (I use frozen)
- 2 red potatoes, unpeeled, cut into cubes
- 2 ripe, cooked plantains (I use frozen – these add a surprising sweetness), sliced into rounds
- 6 oz. super thin fideo noodles. (again, go mellow on the noodles as they can easily take over the entire dish)
- 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
- sea salt and black pepper to taste
1. Sauté the green onions, cilantro, and cumin in olive oil. Quickly whisk in the flour.
Keep whisking to avoid lumps. (When the cilantro cooks, it looses it’s bite and leaves an incredible flavor. Don’t skip the cilantro!)
2. Immediately add 1 cup chicken stock, and continue to whisk until well blended.
3. Remove this mixture from the pot into a bowl and set aside.
4. Place chicken thighs and remaining chicken stock in an 8 quart stockpot.
Bring to a boil.
5. Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer for about 20 minutes.
6. Add the yuca, potatoes, and plantains.
7. Simmer for another 40 minutes, or until vegetables are tender.
8. Remove the chicken thighs from the soup and run under cold water in a colander to cool.
9. Skin and debone the soft chicken, manually shredding it into bite-size pieces.
10. Return the chicken to the chicken stock-onion-cilantro mixture.
11. Add the chicken-chicken stock-onion-cilantro mixture to the soup.
12. Stir in the fresh lemon juice and the noodles.
13. Continue cooking for at least 8 to 10 more minutes or until noodles are soft.
14. Add sea salt and pepper to taste.
So now that I have my Homemade Cuban Chicken Soup, there’s just one thing left to do in my quest to rid myself of this virus.
I’m rubbing it on the soles of my feet before bedtime and putting on some thick socks. I know. Shut up.
Eric calls it Cuban Voodoo. And I have to admit, I believe there are some mystical, healing properties to the VapoRub (or “El Bix”). And after the chicken soup, I’m feeling all nostalgic and wanting some childhood comfort. But I promise you that I draw the line at lighting a candle to San Lazaro.
Never mind. It’s a Cuban thing. But that’s not important right now.
Ay Dios mio.