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Chinese Traditional Herbs and Black Chicken Recipe
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Black Chicken Herbal Soup with Radix Astragali and Codonopsis Pilosula
Both my grandfather and my father studied Chinese medicine from a medical school in China while in their twenties and practiced Chinese medicine for the rest of their lives. Growing up in a house with two Chinese doctors I had learned quite a bit about Chinese herbal medicines and have consumed different Chinese tonic soups containing traditional Chinese herbs.
Black Chicken Herbal Soup with Radix Astragali and Codonopsis Pilosula is one of those tonic soups I have drunk and it is a popular soup among Chinese for replenishing their internal energy and improving any weakened condition of spleen and lung cost by tiredness and stress. If it's your first time to try this soup, it would be wise to use the minimum amount of the Radix Astragali and Codonopsis Pilosulas as stated in the ingredients below. This soup should be taken in moderation. It's not recommended for someone who is sick, pregnant, breast feeding, and/or still in the process of recovering from a surgery. Consult your doctor if you're on medications.
Black Chicken - Silkie
Black chicken is also called Silkie. The reason people called it Black chicken is because of its black skin, flesh and bone. Its skin is also super smooth and a lot thinner than the skin of a regular chicken. Its flesh is grayish-black and has its own unique smell and taste but in a good way. A Black chicken contains antioxidants called carnosine which can improve muscles, brain, skin, and heart. There are many different traditional Chinese herbal soups that include black chicken as one of the main ingredients.
Codonopsis Pilosula is also an energy tonic. It mainly helps with spleen, lungs and stomach and improve the immune system. It can also increase blood cell levels and lower blood pressure. It's used after someone has recovered from illness to replenish their chi - internal energy. It also increases red blood cells which is helpful for anemia patients.
Codonopsis Pilosula is more toward the hot side in terms of Chinese medicine. It's mainly for people with a weak immune system and low vitality. If you haven't try it before, it would be wise to sample it first and wait for a day or two to see whether you can tolerate it. Some people might experience dry throat or have a breakout on their skin. If these symptoms occur, you might want to either stop taking it or dilute it with a lot of water.
Radix Astragali is called Huang Qi or Bei Qi in Chinese. Astragalus root is used to boost the immune system, renew the vitality and improve metabolism. It's especially helpful if you take it before the cold/flu season. It can increases oxygen levels in the blood and prevents body anoxia, improves heart function, lowers blood pressure, protects the liver, and regulates blood sugar.
You can make Black Chicken Herbal Soup with Radix Astragali and Codonopsis Pilosula by boiling or steaming. The following instruction is for boiling and it's better for people who haven't tried this soup before because it's less condense. You can buy Radix Astragali and Codonopsis Pilosula at Chinese herb stores.
- 1 Black Chicken, Cleaned and chopped in desired sizes
- 5-10 g Codonopsis Pilosula
- 10-20 g Radix Astragali
- 5 quarts Water
- In a medium size pot, add in all the ingredients.
- Turn the stove on high and bring the water to a boil. Lower the heat and let it simmer for 2 hours.
- Then turn off the heat, use a pair of chopsticks or other utensils to separate the meat from the bone. You'll see the soup will turn a bit creamy. Use deep bowls to hold the soup. There is no need to add any seasonings. The soup is tasty just by itself.
- You can chew and suck the juice out the the Astragalus and Codonopsis Pilosulae but don't swallow them all. Even the black chicken is hard to swallow after two hours of cooking. Drink the soup when it's hot.