Feel good chicken broth

Photographer: Adam
Makes 4-6 good sized bowls

This time last year saw me with the mother of all colds. I was miserable, snotty and high on paracetamol. Enter my heroic boyfriend with a pot of steaming broth – he scored some brownie points that day, that’s for sure. It was like the elixir of life, every sip seemed to revive me more and serve my nasty viral affliction with the eviction notice my body was taking way too long to give.

Luckily this year my immune system seems a little more alert (still too dozy for my liking!) so I haven’t suffered from a similar variety of cold. But the thought of that broth sends shivers of warmth down my spine, so here’s my crack at it. I modified this recipe from a book called The Healthy Skin Diet, a book I recommend for those suffering from health woes as it assists more than just your skin.


4 cups of water
8 cups chicken stock (refer to our chicken stock recipe)
8 raw chicken drumsticks, skin removed
½ cup of pearl barley
2 red onions
3 sticks of celery finely chopped
2 cobs of corn, kernels shaved off
1 carrot finely chopped
250g sugar snap peas, sliced in half or thirds
4 shitake mushrooms chopped
4 cloves of garlic finely chopped


1. In large pot bring the chicken stock and water to temperature on a high heat. Once the stock mixture has come to a rolling boil reduce heat and add in chicken drumsticks and pearl barley. Let cook for 30min until the chicken is cooked through and the pearl barley is tender.
2. While the chicken is cooking, bring a tablespoon of vegetable oil in a large frying pan to heat on high. Once the pan is hot add the remaining ingredients and fry for 5-10 minutes until the vegetables are cooked through. Season with salt and pepper and set aside.
3. Once the chicken is cooked remove from the stock and pull off the meat and shred.
4. Add the shredded chicken and vegetable mix to the stock, season to taste and serve with some garlic croutons and baby watercress.