I've come to use the term of Jewish Penicillin for Chicken Soup whenever I'm starting to come down with a cold. It's a great remedy and works really well. However, the term was not used during the 19th Century so be careful in your historical novel not to call Chicken Soup by that name. What is interesting is that Chicken broth was often used for the 'invalid' during that time period.
Below are some recipes for Chicken Soup.
Chicken Broth for the Invalid.—Procure a dry-picked Philadelphia roasting chicken; cut it in halves; put one half in the ice box; chop the other half into neat pieces; put it into a small saucepan; add one quart of cold water, a little salt and a leaf of celery; simmer gently for two hours; remove the oily particles thoroughly ; strain the broth into a bowl; when cooled a little, serve to the convalescent. Serve the meat with the broth.
Chicken Soup.—Take three young male chickens; cut them up; put them in a saucepan with three quarts of veal stock. (A sliced carrot, one turnip, and one head of celery may be put with them and removed before the soup is thickened.) Let them simmer for an hour. Remove all the white flesh; return the rest of the birds to the soup, and boil gently for two hours. Pour a little of the liquid over a quarter of a pound of bread crumbs, and when l8 CHICKEN SOUP, NO. 2.
they are well soaked put it in a mortar with the white flesh of the birds, and pound the whole to a smooth paste: add a pinch of ground mace, salt, and a little cayenne pepper; press the mixture through a sieve, and boil once more, adding a pint of boiling cream: thicken with a little flour mixed in cold milk; remove the bones, and serve.
Chicken Soup, No. 2.—Cut up one chicken, put into a stewpan two quarts of cold water, a teaspoonful of salt, and one pod of red pepper; when half done add two desert spoonfuls of well washed rice : when thoroughly cooked, remove the bird from the soup, tear a part of the breast into shreds (saving the remainder of the fowl for a salad), and add it to the soup with a wine-glass full of cream.
Clam Broth.—Procure three dozen littleneck clams in the shell; wash them well in cold water; put them in a saucepan, cover with a quart of hot water; boil fifteen minutes ; drain; remove the shells ; chop up the clams, and add them to the hot broth with a pat of butter; salt if necessary and add a little cayenne; boil ten minutes, pour into a soup tureen, add a slice of toast, and send to table. This is the mode adopted when we do not have a clam opener in the house.
Source: Fifty Soups ©1884
Brown Chicken Soup.—Cut up a nicely dressed chicken. Put it in the pot with water to cover it, which must be measured, and half as much more added to it before the soup is dished. Keep it covered tight, boiling slowly, and take off the fat as fast as it rises. When the chicken is tender, take it from the pot, and mince it very fine. Season it to the taste, and brown it with butter, in a spider, or dripping pan. When brown, put it back in the pot. Brown together butter and flour, and make rich gravy, by adding a pint of the soup; stir this in the soup, and season it with a little pepper, salt, and butter. Be careful the chopped chicken does not settle, and burn on the pot. It will be well to turn a small plate in the bottom of the kettle, to prevent this. Toast bread quite brown and dry, but don't burn it, and lay the toast in tho tureen, and serve it with the soup; stir the chicken through it, and pour it in the tureen.
White Chicken Soup.—Prepare the fowl, as in brown chicken soup, with the same quantity of water. When tender, remove it from the pot, and put into the soup a half teacup of washed pearl barley. Mince the meat fine, season it, and make it into balls with egg and flour, the size of marbles. Season the soup with salt, pepper, and butter. If the barley has not thickened the soup sufficiently, add a little flour stirred in water. Ten minutes before dishing, drop in the meat balls. The soup must be kept only boiling hot, or the balls will break in pieces. Toast bread lightly, or use cracker to crumb in the soup at the table. Celery and sour pickles give relish to chicken soups. Rabbits, squirrels, or birds, can be made into either white or brown soups.
Source: The Housekeeper's Encyclopedia ©1861
PLAIN CHICKEN SOUP.
The flesh of the fowl from which the stock is to be made, should, with the exception of the breast, be cut into small pieces, and the bones broken. The breast, with the skin as perfect as possible, should be placed in the pot whole, on top of the prepared material, and removed as soon as tender. To each quart of stock, when strained and skimmed, add an ounce of rice, and let simmer three-quarters of an hour, then add the breast of the chicken, cut in dice, a little minced parsley, and salt and pepper to taste. Plain chicken soup is much improved if about a pound of round steak be cut up and cooked with the fowl.
To this soup add a pint of sweet cream, thicken with flour, and flavor highly with celery, and the product will be a much admired white soup— cream of celery soup;—or if the celery and cream be omitted, the addition of half a teaspoonful of curry powder will transform it into a choice Mulligatawny soup.
Source: Soup & Soup Making ©1882