OK the chicken doesn’t need to be Jewish. But this soup will cure any cold, which is why it’s called Jewish penicillin.
My Vietnamese student Dan gave me a the advice to break the bones to expose the marrow to add amazing flavor and nutrients to the broth.
Bones, skin, herbs and vegetables from roasted chicken
add 2 more cloves garlic
1 bay leaf
3 stalks celery, leaves also, coarsely chopped
2 carrots chopped, or a handful of baby carrots
1 onion, coarsely chopped with skin
green part of leeks, coarsely chopped
2 tsp. salt, or to taste
Water, about 1 gallon
After serving and boning chicken, reserve bones and skin and herbs. Break the bones to expose the marrow (I use kitchen shears). Return the bones to the soup and let it boil while you shred the chicken by hand. Discard lemon, or it will give a bitter flavor to your broth. Fill roasting pan with water, add more celery, garlic, salt and pepper, the green part of leeks and onions. Keep onion skin on for a golden color to your broth.
Boil for at least an hour; two hours is better. Stir to get the drippings in the pan into your soup. They add a delicious flavor.
Let cool until you can handle the pan. Strain through a strainer and store in refrigerator. The next day you can skim the fat off with a slotted spoon and adjust seasonings. This broth can be used as a base for various soups. Serve topped with fresh dill.
Add kneydlekh-(matzo balls) for special occasions like Passover and Rosh Hashanah or just to help the healing process.
You can also add rice or noodles to the broth.
My mother-in-law, the beautiful Conchita, immigrated from Mexico to the Rio Grande Valley in South Texas with a flair for making meals that were bién rica. I have adapted some of her recipes such as sopa de fideo, which is Mexican chicken-noodle soup. She fries the fideo, which is short vermicelli, and adds onions, tomatoes and salsa.
Vegan Version: Omit the chicken. Add 3 sprigs of rosemary, 5 sprigs thyme, 10 cilantro sprigs, a handful of parsley, 3 sage leaves, and 3 garlic cloves to ingredients. Boil the vegetables and herbs for an hour, then strain and use as a base for vegetable soups.