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What do you crave most when being sick? [moved from Home Cooking board]

My honey has been sick for a week now. Chicken souple doesn't seem to do the trick on the comfort factor. I know my family used to cook congee for me as a child, that's a Chinese thing. That got me curious, what do you crave for or what did you used to get as a child when you are sick?

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  1. depends on what type of "sick". my mom used to make pastene (tiny tiny star-shaped pasta) with butter, tomato soup, grilled cheese, hot and sour soup or mac and cheese.

    now i usually will make noodles or, if mobile, have a bit of sushi.

    2 Replies
    1. re: hotoynoodle

      wow hotoynoodle..did we have the same mom..lol. i didn't get hot & sour soup though. still love tiny pastas and grilled cheese on soft cheap white bread when i'm feeling yucky! i also loved a creamsicle before bed.

      1. re: hotoynoodle

        another vote for pastina w/ butter and also parmesan cheese (kraft in the green can)

        also, rice cakes spread with apple butter or apricot jam

        poached (in chicken broth) chicken breast dipped in mayo

      2. Ginger ale to keep me hydrated. And a watercress soup with a whole liver used to start the broth. I don't think my mother ever made that particular soup unless somebody in the family was sick.

        1. The last time I was sick, all I wanted was ginger ale and ramen noodles. My Mom used to make me the lipton soup in the packets...the one with the dehydrated "chicken" pieces. I find it gross now, but I loved it when I was a kid.

          1. Tomato or chicken noodle soup with peanut butter and jelly on saltine crackers, grilled cheese, and sliced apples or apple sauce. Soooo good.

            1. I make a vegetarian version of chicken noodle soup I make.

              1. Jello. When I had meningitis I craved hospital Jello for 3 weeks. Maybe because the mystery meat was too much of a whodunnit....

                1 Reply
                1. re: Veggo

                  Me too! I couldn't keep ANYTHING down when I had meningitis (I like how we casually mention it, like it's just a cold!) except for JELL-O and an occasional bowl of broth.

                2. For some reason, when I get a cold I crave toasted cinnamon raisin bread with either peanut butter or orange marmelade, and a glass of tomato juice or V-8 with some ice.

                  My Mom also made the Lipton chicken noodle soup, and added a beaten egg for protein, when we were sick.

                  When my kids have upset stomachs, we stick to the "BRAT" diet: bananas, rice, applesauce, and toast. Pretty blah, and probably not memory building for them.

                  1. I live off spicey Chinese food when I'm sick. I used to get a lot of colds when I flew a lot and found that really good hot and sour soup cut the down time in half.

                    2 Replies
                    1. re: Scrapironchef

                      Hot n sour is my choice when I'm sick too. Opens up the sinuses, hearty, chock full of big flavor to punch through the congestion-induced lack of tasting ability.

                      1. re: MeAndroo

                        I also go straight for the Hot and Sour whenever I'm sick but I have to work (Chinese restaurants all over the neighborhood). If I'm cooking, I usually make sinigang na baka with extra bitter greens and a health dose of Sriracha to open up the sinuses, though were I not watching my carbs, I would crave arroz caldo (chicken congee) with extra ginger and garlic.

                    2. A little box of animal crackers...with the string handle on top. My mom always got those for me when I wasn't feeling well.

                      My dad always wants milk toast. Bleah...

                      1. I remember as a sick kid having lots of cold noodle dishes (plain, with just a dipping sauce), Japanese "okayu" (very similar if not identital to congee, I believe, if congee is a thick rice "soup", I usually make it with egg mixed in), and lots of Pocari (the Japanese electrolyte? drink, I find it a lot lighter than Gatorade and makes me feel better)

                        1. eggs and toast were big comfort food for me when sick. Eggs either scrambled or poached, and whole wheat toast with butter. My pregnancy-induced nausea is soothed only by Tom Yum Gai though, oddly enough. That's what I want when nauseated from pregnancy. Tom Yum Gai in large quantities.

                          1 Reply
                          1. re: Amuse Bouches

                            Mine's similar to yours: soft boiled eggs mashed up on buttery toast.

                          2. Raisin bran. Actually, when I'm sick is about the only time I'll eat it, owing in large part to an unfortunate incident in my youth (enough to make you sick if you weren't already) in which some of the "raisins" crawled out of the bowl I was pouring them into and hid under the refrigerator.

                            1. I don't necessarily crave this, but ginger and honey tea always makes me feel better. I think it actually helps me get over a cold. And I always get a strange craving for sardines with steamed white rice and Heinz ketchup.


                              1. I have strep right now and would love some Ukranian borsch.

                                1 Reply
                                1. re: free sample addict aka Tracy L

                                  Tea and toast (white with grape jelly) cut diagonally made by my grandmother-hers always tasted the best.
                                  Strawberry milkshake for sore throats and after any medical test involving fasting and sedation
                                  Coke for nausea AND french fries if nausea is caused by a hangover
                                  Watermelon for diarrhea
                                  Udon for general aches and pains
                                  Hot and Sour soup or Tom Yum Goong for PMS and related symptoms
                                  Chocolate for discomfort of the soul

                                2. Steamed rice and daal when sick with the flu and hot & sour soup with a cold.

                                  1 Reply
                                  1. re: adrienne156

                                    Head cold = jam bong. Ask the Korean grannies cooking, if you're so lucky, to make it Korean spicy. You will be better within hours.

                                  2. I crave pho when I get sick, but when I was a child, I wanted nothing more than cup o'noodles or instant ramen. (I didn't like chicken soup.)

                                    1 Reply
                                    1. re: yogurtsoda

                                      Wonton soup with pork and if I'm up to it, a side order of dumplings or moo's moo's as they are called where we order from (Silk Road Cafe, a tibetan restaurant).

                                    2. I crave rice porridge (or congee - the Cantonese style - as meimei mentioned) . I like the simplest kind usually when I am sick, just plain rice porridge topped with some seaweed or kombu or may be salmon flakes. If my mom is with me I always ask for homemade fresh chicken soup with ginseng. It gives me energy!

                                      1. Depends on what kind of sick.

                                        Head cold & chest congestion - Korean Yukejon (spicy beef soup) or soon tubu (spicy creamy tofu soup) and hot ginger/lemon tea

                                        General blah & stomache disquiet - Korean Chicken/ginseng soup with jujubes

                                        1. I have a sick honey right now too, and the only two things that are doing the trick are mint tea and salt & vinegar chips. I hope he gets better soon or scurvy will be our next worry - he refuses lemon, cayenne, honey tea. . . grr.

                                          1. I crave the foods of my childhood when I'm sick. The top craving being toasted tomato and American cheese sandwiches with mayo.

                                            My sweetie just god over being sick. He just wanted popcorn.

                                            1 Reply
                                            1. re: cheftori

                                              I've got some COOTIES right now...that's why I've been on so much this week.
                                              Since I've got one hell of a cold, I've been craving Sizzling Rice Soup from Chi Dynasty, I've eaten so much toast with butterand lavender honey (La Brea Bakery Whole Grain), warm jasmine rice with a hard boiled egg smushed up in it, Kiwis, Raspberries, and Grapefruit.
                                              I must be on the mend because today, I am craving Tommy Chili Cheese Fries or the Meatloaf sandwich from Larkins...crazy.
                                              Most likely I'll go to Izayoi for the Bento to finally get some real protien and see if I want the bad-for-me goodies later.