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Sep 5, 2006 04:04 PM

What Did Your Mom Cook You When You Were Sick?

Especially that which you still crave when you are sick or give to you own sick children?

My Ukranian mother would make soup with herring dumplings that she swore would cure anything. I used to grump that I just wanted Campbell's Chicken Noodle like all the other kids I knew, but I still crave those dumplings when I get a cold.

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  1. Whenever I have a cold I crave a tuna melt made with cheddar cheese. I don't think it has any restorative properties, but it hits the spot nonetheless.

    1. My mother was Irish. it was her food that made us sick....

      6 Replies
        1. re: Walters

          God, that's right.

          My mom made Campbell's tomato soup (with water, not milk), and grilled cheese sandwiches made with margarine, Kraft singles and Wonder bread, plus flat ginger ale. I still crave this when sick, though I use real bread, Cabot singles, and so on. My mom also made eggnog, though it was horrifying - raw egg and sugar mixed in milk with a little nutmeg on the top.

          I have a very weird food memory of recovering from mono. I had had an incredibly bad case, nearly required hospitalization. I just couldn't keep down any food for five straight days. At the end of that, I managed a little broth. My mom didn't have any actual broth, so she just strained Campbell's chicken soup and Campbells vegetable soup and served me the liquid. Being frugal, she saved the little cubed vegetables and meat and the mushy noodles. The first solid food she served me was some of that mush. The weird thing was that I was so craving nutrition (and, no doubt, SALT), that it tasted amazing. Really, disgusting as it was, it was probably at the time I ate it one of the best-tasting things I had ever had.

          1. re: curiousbaker

            Eggnog is GOOD! But it needs a drop of vanilla in it.

            1. re: Sharuf

              I like eggnog, but it needs a little cream, more sugar than my mother allowed, and vanilla and rum. My mom's version was pretty much egg-milk, with a hint of sugar. I get shivers.

            2. re: curiousbaker

              my mom served campbell's vegetarian vegetable soup.
              our mom's must have gone to the same cooking school.

            3. re: Walters

              Wow, that was the best response yet. Thank you for the laugh.

            4. My favorite sick food growing up was soft-boiled eggs w/toast strips to dunk into the yolks. You couldn't eat that until you were on the mend as it's a bit rich.

              1 Reply
              1. re: JaneRI

                My mom made the exact same. Was craving it this morning after a rough night. I think with all these foods it was your parent comforting you while you were sick that made the food so special.

              2. Campbell's soup (usually the ones with the stars in it), but these days I swear by coca-cola - a can of flat, semi-warm coke almost always does the trick.

                3 Replies
                1. re: erikka

                  Same here, but Campbell's Chicken and Noodle, with lots of cold rice in it to make it thick and gruely.

                  Mom swore by the coca cola syrup from the pharmacist, diluted in a little water with some ice chips for munching, but that was only when we couldn't keep any food down.

                  For my wife, it was crackers and flat ginger ale.

                  1. re: erikka

                    YES, chicken & stars. And gingerale. If I had an upper respiratory infection or soemthing like that, she would make me hot lemonade with a shot of booze in it. I still crave that when I'm sick, but I wonder if it has anything to do with my liking for alcohol!!

                    1. re: prunefeet

                      My grandma would mix apple juice and ginger ale--that worked as well. I think I survived on nothing but that and oatmeal for the month I had chicken pox.

                      I wonder if brandy really does work and how?

                      These days, if I have a sinus or upper respitory infection, I order really spicy thai or indian food and sweat it out.

                  2. Campbells Scotch Broth soup,jello,gingerale, and scrambled eggs. Not all at the same time!