Grab These Ingredients and Make Shalane Flanagan’s Flu-Fighter Chicken and Rice Stew (sort of).

Two years ago I met Shalane Flanagan (last year’s phenom female WINNER of the NYC Marathon). She is one of those people who’s positive energy emotes from her every pore. She is all kinds of sincere and a walking contagion for positivity, using her lit from within bright eyes and generous smile to maximum effect. Obviously, these features won me over immediately. Then she went onto be super nice to my children and I sprinted to the category of being an uber fan of hers.


As parents, we are always casting about for positive, strong, inspirational, and attainable role models.  Shalane is all of this.  I was grateful that our children were able to meet and spend time with her and her superstar (and also super nice) running friend Amy Hastings Craig (aka @hastyhastings). I wondered, how do I keep aspects of this woman in our lives? Enter her cookbook: Run Fast, Eat Slow: Nourishing Recipes for Athletes. I have but one quibble with the title. It should read: Nourishing Recipes for Humans, as all humans can benefit from the philosophies and recipes that Shalane and her co-author Elyse Kopecky highlight in this – must have – compendium – of goodness.

IMG-5409If you are remotely interested in what you put into your body – then this might just be your new favorite cookbook!  I can’t believe I forgot to include it in my Ree Drummond post from last month. I feel so strongly about this, I am going to replace my Gwyneth reference with Shalane Flanagan. How’s that for a long-winded intro to a post on Chicken Soup?

September can be a challenging month.  Re-acclimating to school and schedules and racing around to achieve various deliverables all while sleep deprived and being pulled in a 1,000 different directions. Remarkably it all gets done, but sometimes your body talks back and the common cold can quickly smite you down.

This is what happened to my son and me earlier this week. As neither of us had time to be sick. (Does anyone ever have time to be sick?) I fought back with food and nutrition. We doubled up on our juice plus pills and I went to the store to buy the above-pictured ingredients. Run Fast Eat Slow‘s Flu Fighter Chicken and Rice Stew was just what we needed for – as Shalane says – “putting up a good fight”

Who better than Shalane to have on my side as we tackled our stupid head colds?  I am sure most of you have a “go to” chicken soup recipes. I am certain some of you make your own chicken stock – not me – I cheat with the boxed variety. You can go ahead keep your recipe, but recommend adding the three things that Shalane adds to elevate the healthiness and tastiness of your probably already really good soup.

IMG_5401-3023897550-1538849526257.jpgThose three ingredients are a whole bunch of grated ginger tossed in with garlic, a generous dose of lemon juice, and a flourish of fresh parsley sprinkled on top at the end.

She also adds spinach which I skip but, you should add if you don’t have anti-spinach children like ours. In place of the rice, she suggests we use egg noodles or whatever pasta we have handy (again in deference to the children). This soup is so good!

Nourishing, tasty, AND it whipped us right back into shape. Phew. It also passed the Don test. Don is the husband and Don has opinions about food. Don loved it!! This is saying something. This recipe re-connected me to my love of this woman and her cookbook. I am making two appetizers this evening from the pages of her text.  I will let you know how it goes!

Make this soup!!! Get this cookbook! Enjoy your weekend! I will stop chucking commands at you now. I’m off to buy Shalane and Elise’s new cookbook Run Fast, Cook Fast, Eat Slow.

Flu-fighter Chicken and Rice Stew

From: Run Fast Eat Slow by Shalane Flanagan
Serves 5

  • 1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 5 carrots, sliced
  • 1 yellow onion, chopped (we skip this as my son has an onion aversion – soup still comes out fine)
  • 1 tsp fine sea salt
  • 8 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tbsp finely chopped fresh ginger (I don’t measure I just grate a whole bunch and scoop it in liberally)
  • ¼ to ½ tsp red pepper flakes
  • 6 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 pound boneless, skinless, chicken breasts and thighs
  • 1 cup short-grain brown rice (or pasta!)
  • 3 cups packed fresh spinach
  • 1 cup chopped fresh parsley leaves
  • 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • parmesan cheese (optional)
  • Heat oil in large heavy-bottomed pot over medium-high heat. Add carrots, onion, and salt and cook, stirring occasionally, until soft but not brown, about 5 minutes. Add garlic, ginger, and pepper flakes and cook, stirring continuously, for 1 minute.
  • Add broth, chicken, and rice, and bring to boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer, covered, until chicken is cooked through and the rice is tender, 30 minutes. Remove the chicken from the pot, place on cutting board, and use two forks to shred it.
  • Return chicken to pot and stir in spinach, parsley, and lemon juice. If too thick, thin with a little additional broth or water. Taste and season with salt and pepper flakes if needed. Ladle into soup bowls and top with freshly grated parmesan.
  • To make in slow cooker, simply combine the oil, carrots, onion, salt, garlic, ginger, pepper flakes, broth, chicken, and rice. Cook on high for 4 hours or low for 6-8 hours. Just before serving, add spinach, parsley, and lemon juice and more broth if too thick.  (doing this next time!)


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