Lucy’s Lemon Pepper Chicken Soup is a savory cure for what ails you. Karen Schneider/ For the Forecaster

My 13-year-old granddaughter, Lucy, is an amazing cook whose specialties include this delightful soup that has all the qualities you would expect to experience if you were sitting down at your good grandmama’s table. Spinach, rice and chicken mingling together in homemade stock and brightened with fresh lemon and spiky pepper is good medicine when it comes to curing a cold, settling a troubled tummy, or soothing your heart when a love affair has gone off the tracks.

For this recipe, be sure to take the time to roast up a big fat chicken. You can enjoy it (preferably with a hefty helping of mashed potatoes and gravy on the side) then use the leftovers as instructed below.

Besides chicken soup, turmeric and ginger are also prescribed for anything that ails you. These roasted veggies can be made up quickly and are fantastic as a side, but why not try this method to get some extra nutrients into your kids by putting a big batch in the oven for an afterschool or evening snack?

I know you’re thinking your wee tots and teens will never go for this, but do it anyway. Be nonchalant. The fantastic aroma of these vegetables will draw them into the kitchen to see what’s up. Yes, perhaps they will have to be prompted to taste-test, but the results will be surprising. You’ll see. I have witnessed my very own grandchildren gobble up two heads each of both cauliflower and broccoli in no time flat so give this a whirl and report back to me.

And in an effort to get even more ginger into you, here’s a grandmotherly cake that I’m very fond of. If you like, you can back out of the amount of ground ginger in this recipe and instead add a tablespoon or two of finely diced candied ginger.

Chicken soup, along with some warming spices mixed in with crisp-on-the-edges veggies and enrobed in a simple home-spun cake: welcome to cold season, we have plans for you.

Lucy’s Lemon Pepper Chicken Soup

1 onion, diced

2 large carrots, diced

1 stalk celery, diced

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 tablespoon butter

2 quarts homemade chicken stock from a roasted chicken

Juice of 2 lemons

1 cup jasmine rice

2-3 cups roasted, seasoned chicken, chopped

Freshly ground pepper and salt to taste

1-2 cups fresh baby spinach, julienned

Sauté onion, carrots and celery in olive oil and butter in a big soup pot until softened. Add chicken stock and lemon juice. Add rice and simmer for 30 minutes or until rice is cooked. Add salt, pepper and chicken, keeping the heat to a low simmer. Add spinach; cover and cook until it’s wilted. Yield: 6 servings

Roasted Cauliflower and Broccoli with Turmeric

4 tablespoons olive oil

1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger

1 1/2 teaspoons turmeric

1 head each cauliflower and broccoli, cut into small florets

Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Cayenne and other seasonings of your choice (optional)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In a large bowl, whisk together olive oil, ginger and turmeric. Add vegetables and toss until florets are evenly coated. Season with salt and black pepper. Add optional seasonings if you wish.

Transfer vegetables to a large baking sheet and roast until tender and beginning to brown on the edges, about 20 minutes. Yield: 6 servings

Gingerbread with Pears

3 cups flour

1/2 tsp. salt

1 1/2 tsps. ginger

1 tsp. cinnamon

1/4 tsp. cloves

2/3 cup butter, softened

1 cup sugar

3 eggs

1 cup molasses

1 1/2 tsps. baking soda

1 cup boiling water

2 firm pears, peeled and thinly sliced

Sugar to sprinkle on top

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Sift flour and spices together in a large bowl. In a separate bowl, beat together butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in molasses.

Dissolve baking soda in boiling water. Add flour and spices to butter mixture alternately with water, beating well after each addition. Spoon batter into a greased 13×9-inch baking pan.

Place pear slices over top of batter in rows or create a design. Sprinkle with sugar. Bake for 35 minutes or until cake tests done. Yield: 16 servings

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