Chicken Soup

| December 30, 2012

By: Deborah Barocas

A favorite in my household, Chicken Soup (a.k.a. Jewish Penicillin), my version made its television debut on the Dr. Oz show in February, 2010. It was shown in a segment called “Natural Home Remedies” and was victorious in a competition against two others types of home remedies.

Dr. Oz declared its medicinal value, citing that it does indeed help to cure the common cold. This recipe can also be found in the Dr. Oz show recipe archive.

Chicken Soup (a.k.a. Jewish Penicillin)

  • 1 (4) lb. chicken cut into quarterschicken noodle soup
  • 6 medium sized carrots peeled and cut into 2” pieces
  • 3 long celery stalks (cut into halves)
  • 2 large yellow onions, quartered
  • 6 black peppercorns
  • 1 bunch of parsley
  • 1 bunch of fresh dill
  • 6 Turkish bay leaves
  • 1 ½ tbsp kosher salt or coarse sea salt
  • 3 tbsp butter
  • 3 turnips peeled and cut into quarters
  • 3 parsnips peeled and cut into 2” pieces
  • ½ tsp white pepper
  • 2 ½ quarts of water


Wash and prepare all vegetables, and set aside. Reserve 6 sprigs of dill and chop finely and set aside.

Reserve 4 sprigs of parsley and chop finely, and set aside Tie together, the remainder of parsley and dill with butcher’s twine. Wash and pat chicken dry with paper towels. Sprinkle with ½ tsp of salt and the white pepper on both sides.

In a Dutch oven or a heavy bottomed soup pot, add 2 tbsp of butter. Heat on a high flame and place chicken skin side up and sear until brown. This should take about 2-3 minutes. Flip chicken pieces and brown as well.

Add water and layer with bay leaves, peppercorns, onions, carrots, celery, turnips, parsnips and the remainder of salt. Bring this to a rapid boil and place the tied parsley and dill in the pot. Add the remainder of butter (1tbsp) to the soup if white foam appears. This is a little trick to help it to dissipate, in order to achieve a clear broth. Reduce the heat to a medium simmer and cook for 1 hour.

Using a slotted spoon, remove dill and parsley bunch and discard. Remove parsnips, turnips, bay leaves, peppercorns, onions, and celery and discard. Remove skin from chicken and discard. Transfer chicken pieces to a soup tureen and then carrots. Finally skim fat from broth and pour in the soup tureen.

Top with fresh chopped dill and parsley. Cover to keep warm.

If you are making matzo balls or noodles after carrots and chicken have been removed from soup, cook them in this broth to intensify their flavor. Add matzo balls to the tureen and carefully pour broth to top, and then top with fresh chopped dill and parsley.