The funk. The gunk. The flu. The Ohio River Valley Special. We all have it, or will have it some time this winter. The first order of business, after medicating, is to get some soup in your body. I always gravitate towards these four soups from area restaurants. They seem to make me extremely happy in my compromised state.

Hot and Sour Soup from August Moon

This is usually my first request and there are magical powers in this soup, especially for any sort of head cold. The egg roll on the side offers up some just-fried happiness with a side of dipping sauce love. There is no meat in this soup, just tofu and egg, along with mushrooms, bamboo shoots and water chestnuts. To see the recipe for this, click here:

Hot and Sour Soup

Mama Mandola’s Sicilian Chicken Soup at Carrabba’s

This is the chicken soup from Carrabba’s, which I have been eating since I was a young pup in Houston. The original Carrabba’s restaurants were owned by a family friend (before they became a huge nationwide chain) and that was our go-to Italian restaurant, approximately five minutes from my childhood home. This soup is everything you love about chicken noodle soup, with an Italian influence. I realize that the Carrabba’s here in Louisville is part of the big chain, but this soup stands on its own with the same recipe that has been passed down in the Mandola and Carrabba family for generations. To see this recipe, click here:

Image credit: Peeking Pines
Image credit:

Tortilla Soup at Chuy’s

Just like Carrabba’s, this Texan was raised on Chuy’s, and this soup is a must. When the Chuy’s opened here, it was the first thing I ordered (as a quality control test). They passed with flying colors. This soup is a “homemade chicken broth with freshly-roasted, hand-pulled chicken, avocado, roasted corn, green chiles, tomatoes and cilantro, topped with cheese and tortilla strips” and, what they have neglected to include in the description is the pack of homemade tortillas included as a side (and sent from heaven). I think you either veer Italian or Mexican with your chicken soups, and this is the Mexican option. Here is the recipe for this soup:

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Chuy’s Tortilla Soup. Image credit:

Tom Kha from Relish

I have written about this soup before, and it is truly a soup for all seasons. Tom Kha has very simple ingredients that pack a big flavorful punch: “lemongrass, coconut milk, chicken, shallots, mushrooms.” I would not even attempt to make this soup because Relish does such a good job for me. I eat it sick or well, but it is exceptionally healing during blech-feeling times. Best news is that you can buy a big vat of it and eat on it for days.

A MUST EAT soup from Relish: Tom Kha.

Feeling better? Got your appetite back?

Maybe this little funny will make you feel better too. JT always makes me feel better.
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About the Author
Heidi Potter