Thursday, April 10, 2014

Time Flies...

Still feeling under the weather, so stayed in bed later than normal.  Felt better later this afternoon, and now, nearly midnight, feel tired again, so this will be a shorter blog than normal (do I hear sighs of relief?).

As I've nothing of interest today am just giving a few recipes - these discovered today in a catering book on the 'soup' section.  Was reading through it to see if there was any that contained beer (as I'm still working on Jane's query), and there was one.  Can't say I'd be inclined to make it, but then someone else would probably enjoy it.  If we have nothing else to make soup with, then this could be the answer, especially when entertaining for it is an authentic traditional Swedish recipe.  They call it 'Schwedische Biersuppe' - and despite the difference in language, this is easily translated into English. Not sure whether Swedish beer is weaker than our stout/Guinness, perhaps more like lager.  Does anyone know?

Swedish Beer Soup: serves 4
1 1/2 pints (3/4 of a litre) of beer
1 cinnamon stick
2 tblsp flour
4 tblsp cold water
3 egg yolks
3 tblsp sugar
8 fl oz (1/4 of a litre) of milk, heated to boiling
Put the beer in a pan with the cinnamon stick and bring to the boil.  Mix the flour with the cold water and stir this into the beer.  Bring back to the boil.
Meanwhile beat the egg yolks and sugar until light and fluffy, then pour on the boiling milk, beating with a whisk.  Remove the soup from the heat and take out the cinnamon stick.  Stir the egg mixture into the soup, beating vigorously.  Serve immediately.

This next recipe HAS to be included as it is a most unusual soup from the Provencal region of France.  Said to have extraordinary virtues: 'nothing can resist it: hangover, illness, childbirth - there can be no convalescence without "boiled water".  Boiled water saves your life'

Boiled Water: serves 4
2 pints (or 1 litre) water
1 tsp salt
12 - 15 cloves garlic
1 - 2 bay leaves
1 - 2 sprigs sage
4 tblsp olive oil
slices dry bread
grated Parmesan or Gruyere cheese
Put the water in a saucepan with the salt and add the garlic.  Bring to the boil.  After 10 minutes add the bay leaves, sage and a dash of oil.  Cook for a few minutes more then removed from heat and cover, leaving to stand for about 10 minutes, then strain.
Put the bread slices into a soup tureen, cover with grated cheese and sprinkle with remaining oil, then pour over the strained infusion.

The 'soup book' is amazing, it has some very unusual recipes, and over the next few days I'll be trying to find some that fit into our cost-cutting way of life.   As there is still time to give a further recipe before I retire, you may wish to try this as it can be made from almost any sort of cabbage (I prefer the white) and the tomatoes needn't be fresh, at this time of the year use either passata or the canned chopped toms.
The stock could be chicken, beef, or vegetable - each adding a different flavour to the soup.

Sweet and Sour Cabbage Soup: serves 6
1 small cabbage, finely shredded
3 pints (1.5 ltrs) stock (see above)
5 fl oz (150ml) tomato juice or sieve tomatoes
3 apples, peeled and grated
1 onion, grated
salt and pepper
2 - 3 tblsp lemon juice
Put the stock and the tomato juice in a saucepan and bring it to the boil, then add the cabbage, apples, and onion.  Cover and simmer for 30 minutes, then season with salt and pepper to taste, and before serving stir in the lemon juice with sugar to taste.

That's it for today.  Now that I've found my catering books (full of recipes that are often not found in domestic cookbooks) let me know if there is any ingredient or dish you wish to try, or have a problem with making.  The books may tell us what to do/how to make.  
Until this time tomorrow.  TTFN.