Some of the recipes I get asked for most often are my cold-busting tea and soup. Both rely heavily on garlic. I'm not sure of the exact scientific reasons behind WHY garlic has the magic touch, but I've heard many accounts of antibacterial and antiviral properties.
The tea was recommended to me by an elderly Chinese lady (who I used to work with at a mortgage company, just to remove any air of mystery or worldliness that might surround that statement). Over the years, I've learned to listen to pretty much whatever old ladies tell me, because the advice is generally fairly good.
For the tea, the concoction is pretty simple:
1. Smash a clove of garlic with the side of a big knife; discard the skin.
2. Pop the garlic clove into a mug of hot water OR pop the garlic clove into a mug of non-hot water and microwave it for 1 - 1.5 minutes. Let it sit for at least 5 minutes.
3. If you don't have time to let it come to a reasonable temperature, pop an ice cube into the concoction and stir until it dissolves. Or you can just let it cool off on its own.
4. Discard the garlic clove. If you like, add some honey or a squeeze of lemon and stir. If not, don't.
5. Drink it all as quickly as you can.
6. Brush your teeth. (Or at least pop a mint.)
Repeat up to 4 times a day, like you might with Airborne or Emergen-C. Way cheaper than either of those options.
And then there's the mid-day, "I just came home sick from work" Lunchtime Method...
Heat up a pot of chicken or miso broth and load it up with LOTS of sliced garlic. If this is all you have, you can stop there, but I will generally chop and throw in any veggies or noodles/rice I have on hand. (Carrots are particularly good. Let those cook a good long time until they're soft. And at the last second, a handful of spinach leaves is also a good touch; cook just until they're wilted.)
Serve up a cup, add in a healthy squeeze of sriracha hot sauce (as much as you can handle) and mix it in until your soup is a nice shade of orange.
Have a big glass of water, a glass of orange juice, and a box of tissues nearby. Eat the soup, utilizing as much of the water, OJ, and tissues as needed. (That soup should make your nose run like crazy.)
Once the soup is gone, take a nap. You should feel a good deal better when you wake up.