It seems that everyone I speak with lately has been sick. The flu, the stomach virus, a cold, cough, sore throat. And, as if that isn't bad enough, there's news of a "supervirus" coming over from Australia and expected to hit the area within the next few weeks. For someone like me, who already has germaphobe tendencies, it's enough to make me want to strap on a surgical mask and a space suit before I leave the house every morning (And if they were a little easier to accessorize, I just might!!). Instead, I'm doing everything in my power to boost my immune system: getting enough rest, taking vitamins, washing my hands frequently and increasing my fluid intake.
By taking in more fluids - water, caffeine-free herbal teas and soups - the body is better able to flush out toxins. That's why soup is the perfect remedy for colds and other illnesses. Our bodies actually crave it when we're sick because of its restorative properties.
Soup fills us up, is easy to digest, floods the body with nutrients (the more veggies, the better), and it's a natural and efficient way to flush germs and toxins out of the system. I plan on making a lot of it in the coming weeks.
This Butternut Squash and Apple Soup is one that I've made as an opening act for Thanksgiving dinner. Last week, I bought a beautiful butternut squash and decided to make it again. The apple makes it sweet enough to be kid friendly, yet it's loaded with veggies. I, especially, love puréed soups like this because the creamy consistency makes it very hearty...perfect comfort food. Perfect immune booster. Supervirus, beware!
2 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
1 yellow onion, chopped
2 ribs celery, chopped
2 carrots, chopped
1 butternut squash, peeled, seeds removed and cubed (about 1lb.)
1 granny smith apple, peeled, cored and chopped
4 cups vegetable broth
Pinch of nutmeg, salt and pepper
In a medium saucepan, over medium high heat, combine olive oil, onion, celery and carrot. Saute for 5 minutes. Add squash, apple, and vegetable broth. Bring to boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes or until squash is soft. Allow to cool slightly and then puree (using either an immersion blender or a traditional blender). Add spices to taste.
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