Hippocrates engraving by Peter Paul Rubens, 1638

“Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food.”–Hippocrates

After indulging over the holidays–the pleasant memories of feasting still fresh in my mind–I eat some turkey sandwiches and promise myself I will eat simply for a few days when the holiday is over. There are many versions of “detox” soups and I have made variations of them over time. Bieler broth, and Dr. Connelly’s more culinary version, are staples of mine and certainly make me feel as if I am reversing some of the effects of eating too much stuffing.

Hippocrate’s healing soup

Essentially an alkalizing vegetable soup with endless variations, the original recipe came from Hippocrates–said to be the father of medicine–some 2,400 years ago.

The asclepeion, or healing temple, in Kos where Hippocrates was from

While expanded from the original recipes, I found this version incorporates what I like from other healing soups. I scrub the vegetables lightly with a damp dishcloth and then wipe them down with raw apple cider vinegar to preserve the skins–a step which Hippocrates believed preserved many of the beneficial vitamins.

My version of Hippocrates Healing Soup

Equal parts (about 1 cup is good)
Scallions or Leeks
Parsley & Basil
Paprika, Sea Salt and Pepper to taste
optional: 4 cloves of garlic and 1 onion (or to taste)
Olive or Coconut Oil
Water or Chicken Stock (or turkey if you saved your carcass to make stock!)
If you feel like being slightly less healthy: serve with a swirl of cream or yogurt

If using the onions–saute in oil until translucent and then add the celery and carrots and saute– stirring occasionally–until they begin to brown. Add the leeks or scallions and the garlic if your using it. Finally add the zucchini and water or stock and simmer until all the vegetables are soft. Don’t let the soup come to a boil–too high a temperature is said to harm the nutritional value. Enjoy!

“Foolish is the doctor who despises the knowledge acquired by the ancients.” –Hippocrates