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Avoid the Crowds, Stay Home and Cook

Vitamin C Recipes to Make While Self-Quarantining

Published Thursday, March 12, 2020
by Stacey Shannon

“Everybody in this family needs to just calm down and eat some fruit or something.” – Mel Gibson as Graham Hess in the 2002 movie, “Signs”. 

We’re not going to say it, that “C” word that everyone is talking about.  Instead we have our own “C” we want to talk about:  Vitamin C! We take you beyond orange juice with these surprising dishes and beverages you can whip up in your own kitchen while you are under self-quarantine.  With easy-to-find ingredients from Berks County providers, you will be boosting your family’s immune systems in no time! 

Avoid the large crowds in the grocery store (there’s no toilet paper there anyway), and pick up what you need while supporting local farms and businesses by shopping at one of these area markets:  PA Dutch Farmers Market in Wyomissing, Shillington Farmer’s Market in Shillington, Leesport Farmer’s Market in Leesport, West Reading Farmer’s Market in West Reading, and Russo Gourmet Foods & Market in Wyomissing. 

First Up, A Duck's Oven's Lemon Chicken & Veggie Bake, a one pot meal perfect for a chilly March evening:


2 large russet potatoes, chopped into ¾ × ¾ inch pieces
1 medium yellow onion, roughly chopped
1 small head of broccoli, chopped into florets
1 small head of cauliflower, chopped into florets
1 lemon
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp minced garlic
1 tsp salt
½ tsp black pepper
1 tsp lemon pepper
1 tsp Italian seasoning

4 bone in, skin on chicken thighs
4 drumsticks
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp minced garlic
1 tsp salt
½ tsp black pepper
1 tsp lemon pepper
1 tsp Italian seasoning


    1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

  1. Zest the lemon completely, making sure to not zest the white part of the lemon. Slice the lemon into 8 wedges.

  2. Add the potatoes, onion, broccoli, and cauliflower to a 9×13-inch glass baking dish. Season with olive oil, minced garlic, salt, black pepper, lemon pepper, and Italian seasoning. Squeeze three of the lemon wedges over the veggies and sprinkle with a quarter of the lemon zest. Toss to coat.

  3. Season the chicken pieces with olive oil, minced garlic, salt, black pepper, lemon pepper, and Italian seasoning. Arrange on top of the veggies. Squeeze three more lemon wedges and sprinkle half the remaining zest over the chicken.

  4. Bake in preheated oven for 45 minutes. Set oven to broil and broil for 3-5 minutes, or until chicken skin is golden brown. Remove from oven, flip chicken, and broil for another 3-5 minutes until skin on other side is golden brown.

  5. Remove from oven and squeeze remaining lemon wedges and sprinkle remaining zest over the chicken and veggies. Let the chicken rest for five minutes before serving.

How about Simple Broccoli Cheddar Risotto from The Savory Tooth for the vegetarian in your life? 

Simple Broccoli Cheddar Risotto

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 35 minutes

Total Time: 45 minutes

Servings: 3 servings

This is a simple broccoli cheddar risotto recipe: a comforting vegetarian dinner that's easily cooked in a single pan.


  • 5 cups small broccoli florets, fresh

  • 1 cup risotto rice or arborio rice

  • 3 cups vegetable broth

  • 1 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese

  • 5 cloves garlic chopped

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil

  • 2 tablespoons butter

  • 3/4 teaspoon salt

  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper


  1. Heat olive oil in a 3-quart nonstick sauté pan over medium heat. Add broccoli, garlic, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and pepper. Cook until the broccoli is tender, about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Transfer broccoli to a plate and set aside.

  2. Add rice, vegetable stock, and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Stir. Bring to a boil over high heat, then cover with a lid and decrease to medium-low heat or lower to maintain simmer. Simmer for 30 minutes.

  3. Uncover the pan and check that the rice is tender and done. Add cheddar cheese and stir with the rice until melted. Add broccoli and butter to the pan, stirring until the broccoli is heated and the butter is melted. Serve while hot.


This Bacon Brussels Sprouts with Garlic Parmesan Cream recipe from Oat & Sesame may possibly be the most decadent and appetizing way to serve Brussells sprouts in existence! 

Pan roasted Bacon Brussels Sprouts have just a touch of garlic parmesan cream sauce and optional bacon bits. A light hand on the cream sauce and bacon gives just enough to call it comfort food.


Prep Time 5 minutes

Cook Time 15 minutes

Total Time 20 minutes

Servings 6

Author Emily Brees | OatandSesame


6 slices thick cut bacon (TIP: start with room temp bacon for more even crisping)

1.5 Lbs Brussels, sprouts cleaned and halved

1 Tbs butter

1 Tbs minced onion

Optional: 1/4 cup panko bread crumbs


1/2 cup heavy cream

1/2 cup parmesan cheese grated

3 cloves garlic minced

sea salt

fresh ground pepper


In a large cast iron skillet, lay the bacon in rows. Turn heat to medium and cook the bacon, flipping halfway through, about 10 min. until crispy and brown. Remove the bacon from the pan onto paper towels, crumble and set aside. Drain most of the bacon drippings into a heat proof container leaving just a tad in the skillet to sauté the Brussels sprouts in.

Place the skillet back on the stove at medium-high. Add butter. Once melted add minced onion and Brussels sprouts.

Sauté, tossing occasionally until the sprouts are crisp, tender and golden brown. About 7-10 min. Add the crumbled bacon back to the pan and toss. Turn off heat.

In a small sauce pan over medium high heat add heavy cream, cheese, garlic salt and pepper.

Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low and simmer until melted and thickened ~ 2-3 min.

Pour over the top of the roasted Brussels. Serve or top with optional bread crumbs.

Optional: top with 1/4 cup panko bread crumbs and place under the broiler for 2 min until golden.

And now it’s time to wash it all down!  Here’s a recipe to start the day.... Southern In Law's Vitamin C Flu Fighter Smoothie Recipe

Yield: 1-2 servings

prep time: 5 M

cook time: 2 M

total time: 7 M


1 orange, peeled

1 cup frozen pineapple chunks

1 cup frozen mango chunks

1 carrot, peeled and chopped into pieces

Enough water or coconut water to blend


1. Add all of your ingredients to your blender, topping with just enough water or coconut water to make your smoothie blendable.

2. Blend on high for ~1-2 minutes or until your smoothie is completely smooth and no lumps remain.

3. Pour into a glass and enjoy!

NOTES: The carrot is optional, but highly recommended for extra vitamins. I promise you won't taste it!


Annnnd….one to put a nightcap on a day of reading headlines and hoarding hand sanitizer….

Hot Toddy Recipe for Colds and Flu from The Holy Mess

Feeling under the weather? This old fashioned hot toddy will help you feel better - fast, and with all natural ingredients.

Prep Time: 5 mins

Total Time: 5 mins

Servings: 1

Author: Sara Borgstede


  • 1 cup of hot water or hot tea or lemonade

  • 1 tbsp honey

  • 1 tsp lemon juice

  • Lemon slices optional

  • 2 cinnamon sticks optional

  • 1/2 oz Whiskey


  1. Heat liquid of choice

  2. Add honey, lemon, whiskey

  3. Stir till combined

  4. Add lemon slices and cinnamon sticks (optional)

  5. Slowly drink, enjoy and feel better!