I’m the worst cold patient ever. No patience at all. I’ll happily settle down in front of the TV with a cup of tea, a tissue box and a blanket and relax completely for approximately four minutes, after which I decide that there is NOTHING ON, that there NEVER WILL BE ANY REASONABLY INTERESTING SHOW ON EVER and that the room needs urgent cleaning/rearranging of furniture/redecorating anyway. At which point, I get up determindly and collapse heroically trying to move a pillow. Because, as I may have missed to pointed out above, I have approximately 40° C fever. So I settle down back in front of the TV, annoying the hell out of everyone who happens to be within a 5 mile radius from me and/or reachable on telephone. For this reason, my mum was quick to make my granny’s special soup for me because she knew it would speed up my recovery which I genuinely believe to this day.
This time however, I didn’t have some of the ingredients at home and shopping was slightly out of the question, so I went with what I had in the fridge (miso paste! Fennel!) and a lot of turmeric since it’s got anti-inflammatory properties (says the internet) and my ex-flatmate used to put it into practically everything because it’s good for you (says her mum) and I really miss that godawful dodgy tea she always made me drink when I got ill.
So turmeric it is. As much as I love its taste, it is a stubborn bastard of a stain to get out of clothes so try not to spill it and reconcile yourself to the idea that your fingertips will look like you’re about to die of nicotine overdose.
Cut up 1/2 onion, slice a 1 inch piece of ginger, 1 garlic clove and soften for a bit in a big pot with a little oil (don’t brown, just soften). Add 1 tbsp turmeric, 1/2 a sliced carrot, 4 sliced brown mushrooms, 3 chopped celery stalks, 1/4 chopped fennel, 4 dried porcini mushrooms/ceps, half a handful cubed tofu, 3 tblsp dark miso paste (more if using yellow miso), some black pepper and stir well to let the miso dissolve. Add a couple spinach leaves. Bring to a boil, then let it simmer for 10 minutes and try not to call up all your friends who might be trying to hold down a job and are not overly keen anyway on being whined at by Mrs. Sniffles.