It cannot be denied that the French excel all nations in the excellence of their cuisine, and to their soups and sauces belong the greatest praise. It would be well to follow their example, and it is the duty of every housekeeper to learn the art of soup making. How may a hearty dinner be better begun than with a thin soup? The hot liquid, taken into an empty stomach, is easily assimilated, acts as a stimulant rather than a nutrient (as is the popular opinion), and prepares the way for the meal which is to follow. The cream soups and purées are so nutritious that, with bread and butter, they furnish a satisfactory meal.
Various names have been given to soups, according to their flavorings, chief ingredients, the people who use them, etc. To the Scotch belongs Scotch Broth; to the French, Pot-au-feu; to the Indo, Mulligatawny; and to the Spanish, Olla Podrida.
The art of soup making is more easily mastered than at first appears. The young housekeeper is startled at the amazingly large number of ingredients the recipe calls for, and often is discouraged. One may, with but little expense, keep at hand what is essential for the making of a good soup. Winter vegetablesturnips, carrots, celery, and onionsmay be bought in large or small quantities. The outer stalks of celery, often not suitable for serving, should be saved for soups. At seasons when celery is a luxury, the tips and roots should be saved and dried. Sweet herbs, including thyme, savory, and marjoram, are dried and put up in packages, retailing from five to ten cents. Bay leaves, which should be used sparingly, may be obtained at first-class grocers or druggists; seeming never to lose strength, they may be kept indefinitely. Spices, including whole cloves, allspice berries, peppercorns, and stick cinnamon, should be kept on hand. These seasonings, with the addition of salt, pepper, and parsley, are the essential flavorings for stock soups. Flour, cornstarch, arrowroot, fine tapioca, sago, pearl barley, rice, bread, or eggs are added to give consistency and nourishment.
In small families, where there are few left-overs, fresh meat must be bought for the making of soup stock, as a good soup cannot be made from a small amount of poor material. On the other hand, large families need seldom buy fresh meat, provided all left-overs are properly cared for. The soup kettle should receive small pieces of beef (roasted, broiled, or stewed), veal, carcasses of fowl or chicken, chop bones, bones left from lamb roast, and all trimmings and bones, which a careful housewife should see are sent from the market with her order. Avoid the use of smoked or corned meats, or large pieces of raw mutton or lamb surrounded by fat, on account of the strong flavor so disagreeable to many. A small piece of bacon or lean ham is sometimes cooked with vegetables for flavor.
Beef ranks first as regards utility and economy in soup making. It should be cut from the fore or hind shin (which cuts contain marrow-bone), the middle cuts being most desirable. If the lower part of shin is used, the soup, although rich in gelatin, lacks flavor, unless a cheap piece of lean meat is used with it, which frequently is done. It must be remembered that meat, bone, and fat in the right proportions are all necessary; allow two-thirds lean meat, the remaining one-third bone and fat. From the meat the soluble juices, salts, extractives (which give color and flavor), and a small quantity of gelatin are extracted; from the bone, gelatin (which gives the stock when cold a jelly-like consistency) and mineral matter. Gelatin is also obtained from cartilage, skin, tendons, and ligaments. Some of the fat is absorbed; the remainder rises to the top and should be removed.
Soup-stock making is rendered easier by use of proper utensils. Sharp meat knives, hardwood board, two purée strainers having meshes of different size, and a soup digester (a porcelain-lined iron pot, having tight-fitting cover, with valve in the top), or covered granite kettle, are essentials. An iron kettle, which formerly constituted one of the furnishings of a range, may be used if perfectly smooth. A saw, cleaver, and scales, although not necessary, are useful, and lighten labor.
When meat comes from market, remove from paper and put in cool place. When ready to start stock, if scales are at hand, weigh meat and bone to see if correct proportions have been sent. Wipe meat with clean cheesecloth wrung out of cold water. Cut lean meat in one-inch cubes; by so doing, a large amount of surface is exposed to the water, and juices are more easily drawn out. Heat frying-pan hissing hot; remove marrow from marrow-bone, and use enough to brown one-third of the lean meat, stirring constantly, that all parts of surface may be seared, thus preventing escape of juices,sacrificing a certain amount of goodness in the stock to give additional color and flavor, which is obtained by caramelization. Put fat, bone, and remaining lean meat in soup kettle; cover with cold water, allowing one pint to each pound of meat, bone, and fat. Let stand one hour, that cold water may draw out juices from meat. Add browned meat, taking water from soup kettle to rinse out frying-pan, that none of the coloring may be lost. Heat gradually to boiling-point, and cook six or seven hours at low temperature. A scum will rise on the top, which contains coagulated albuminous juices; these give to soup its chief nutritive value; many, however, prefer a clear soup, and have them removed. If allowed to remain, when straining, a large part will pass through strainer. Vegetables, spices, and salt should be added the last hour of cooking. Strain and cool quickly; by so doing, stock is less apt to ferment. A knuckle of veal is often used for making white soup stock. Fowl should be used for stock in preference to chicken, as it is cheaper, and contains a larger amount of nutriment. A cake of fat forms on stock when cold, which excludes air, and should not be removed until stock is used. To remove fat, run a knife around edge of bowl and carefully remove the same. A small quantity will remain, which should be removed by passing a cloth wrung out of hot water around edge and over top of stock. This fat should be clarified and used for drippings. If time cannot be allowed for stock to cool before using, take off as much fat as possible with a spoon, and remove the remainder by passing tissue or any absorbent paper over the surface.
Whites of eggs slightly beaten, or raw, lean beef finely chopped, are employed for clearing soup stock. The albumen found in each effects the clearing by drawing to itself some of the juices which have been extracted from the meat, and by action of heat have been coagulated. Some rise to the top and form a scum, others are precipitated.
Remove fat from stock, and put quantity to be cleared in stew-pan, allowing white and shell of one egg to each quart of stock. Beat egg slightly, break shell in small pieces and add to stock. Place on front of range, and stir constantly until boiling-point is reached; boil two minutes. Set back where it may simmer twenty minutes; remove scum, and strain through double thickness of cheesecloth placed over a fine strainer. If stock to be cleared is not sufficiently seasoned, additional seasoning must be added as soon as stock has lost its jelly-like consistency; not after clearing is effected. Many think the flavor obtained from a few shavings of lemon rind an agreeable addition.
Cream soups and purées, if allowed to stand, separate, unless bound together. To bind a soup, melt butter, and when bubbling add an equal quantity of flour; when well mixed add to soup, stirring constantly until boiling-point is reached. If recipe calls for more flour than butter, or soup is one that should be made in double boiler, add gradually a portion of hot mixture to butter and flour until of such consistency that it may be poured into the mixture remaining in double boiler.
Wipe beef, and cut the lean meat in inch cubes. Brown one-third of meat in hot frying-pan in marrow from a marrow-bone. Put remaining two-thirds with bone and fat in soup kettle, add water, and let stand for thirty minutes. Place on back of range, add browned meat, and heat gradually to boiling-point. As scum rises it should be removed. Cover, and cook slowly six hours, keeping below boiling-point during cooking. Add vegetables and seasonings, cook one and one-half hours, strain, and cool as quickly as possible.
Wipe, and cut meat in inch cubes. Put two-thirds of meat in soup kettle, and soak in water thirty minutes. Brown remainder in hot frying-pan with marrow from marrow-bone. Put browned meat and bone in kettle. Heat to boiling-point; skim thoroughly, and cook at temperature below boiling-point five hours. Add seasonings and vegetables, cook one hour, strain, and cool. Remove fat, and clear. Serve in bouillon cups.
Cook onion, carrot, celery, and ham in butter five minutes, add flour, peppercorns, bay leaf, cloves, and thyme, and cook three minutes; then add tomatoes, cover, and cook slowly one hour. When cooked in oven it requires less watching. Rub through a strainer, add hot stock, and season with salt and pepper.
Cook rice in Brown Stock until soft. Cook bay leaf, onion, peppercorns, and celery salt with tomatoes thirty minutes. Combine mixtures, rub through sieve, and bind with butter and flour cooked together. Season with salt and pepper if needed.
Cook pepper and onion in butter five minutes. Add flour, stock, and tomatoes, and simmer fifteen minutes. Strain rub through sieve, and season highly with salt, pepper, and cayenne. Just before serving add horseradish, vinegar, and macaroni previously cooked and cut in rings.
To one quart clear Brown Soup Stock, add one-fourth cup each carrot and turnip, cut in thin strips one and one-half inches long, previously cooked in boiling salted water, and two tablespoons, each, cooked peas and string beans. Heat to boiling-point.
Wipe meat and cut in inch cubes. Put one-half in kettle with marrow-bone, water, and tomatoes. Brown remaining half in hot frying-pan with some marrow from bone, then turn into kettle. Heat slowly to boiling-point, and cook at temperature just below boiling-point five hours.
Prepare and cook beef same as for Bouillon. Cook vegetables in butter five minutes; then add to soup with remaining seasonings. Cook one and one-half hours, strain, cool quickly, remove fat, and clear. When ready to clear, add one cup finely chopped raw beet and one-fourth cup vinegar. Select red beets for this soup, and serve as soon as possible after clearing, otherwise it will lose its bright red color, which makes the dish especially appropriate for an American Beauty Dinner.
Cut ox-tail in small pieces, wash, drain, sprinkle with salt and pepper, dredge with flour, and fry in butter ten minutes. Add to Brown Stock, and simmer one hour. Then add vegetables, which have been parboiled twenty minutes; simmer until vegetables are soft, add salt, cayenne, wine, Worcester-shire Sauce, and lemon juice.
Wipe meat, remove skin and fat, and cut meat in small pieces. Add water, heat gradually to boiling-point, skim, and cook slowly two hours. After cooking one hour, add salt, pepper, turnip, and onion. Strain, cool, remove fat, reheat, and thicken with flour diluted with enough cold water to pour easily. Cook carrot and turnip dice in boiling salted water until soft; drain, and add to soup. Soak barley over night, in cold water, drain, and cook in boiling salted water until soft; drain, and add to soup. If barley should be cooked in the soup, it would absorb the greater part of the stock. Barley may be omitted; in that case sprinkle with finely chopped parsley and serve with croûtons.
Wipe veal, remove from bone, and cut in small pieces; cut beef in pieces, put bone and meat in soup kettle, cover with cold water, and bring quickly to boiling-point; drain, throw away the water. Wash thoroughly bones and meat in cold water; return to kettle, add vegetables, seasonings, and three quarts boiling water. Boil three or four hours; the stock should be reduced one half.
Wipe meat, remove from bone, and cut in small pieces. Put meat, bone, water, and seasonings in kettle. Heat gradually to boiling-point, skimming frequently. Simmer four or five hours, and strain. If scum has been carefully removed, and soup is strained through double thickness of cheesecloth, stock will be quite clear.
Wipe and cut up fowl. Cover with water, and add carrot, salt, peppercorns, onion, celery, and bay leaf. Bring quickly to boiling-point, then let simmer until meat is tender. Remove meat and strain stock. Chill, remove fat, reheat, and add wine, beef extract, and cream. Season with salt and pepper.
Wipe, clean, and disjoint fowl. Wipe veal, remove from bone, and cut in small pieces. Put meat, bone, and water in kettle, heat slowly to boiling-point, skim, and cook slowly four hours. Cook vegetables and ham in one tablespoon butter five minutes, add to soup with peppercorns and salt, and cook one hour. Strain, cool, and remove fat. Reheat three cups stock, thicken with remaining butter and flour cooked together, and just before serving add cream and egg yolks. Garnish with one-half cup cooked green peas and Chicken Custard cut in dice.
Add seasonings to stock, and simmer thirty minutes; strain, and thicken with butter and flour cooked together; add scalded milk. Dilute eggs, slightly beaten, with hot soup, and add to remaining soup; strain, and season with salt and pepper. Serve at once or soup will have a curdled appearance.
Break turkey carcass in pieces, removing all stuffing; put in kettle with any bits of meat that may have been left over. Cover with cold water, bring slowly to boiling-point, and simmer two hours. Strain, remove fat, and season with salt and pepper. One or two outer stalks of celery may be cooked with carcass to give additional flavor.
Cook onion fifteen minutes in one tablespoon butter; add to stock, with bread broken in pieces. Simmer one hour; rub through sieve. Add milk, and bind with remaining butter and flour cooked together; add cream, and season.
Cook vegetables three minutes in one and one-half tablespoons butter, then add stock and mace; boil fifteen minutes, strain, and add milk. Thicken with remaining butter and flour cooked together; add salt and pepper. Stir in cheese, and serve as soon as cheese is melted.
Cook stock with seasonings twenty minutes. Rub yolks of eggs through sieve. Soak cracker crumbs in cold milk until soft; add to eggs. Chop meat and rub through sieve; add to egg and cracker mixture. Then pour milk on slowly, and add to strained stock; boil three minutes. Bind with butter and flour cooked together.
Soak bread crumbs in milk, add yolks of eggs rubbed through a sieve and chicken meat also rubbed through a sieve. Add gradually milk, and chicken stock highly seasoned. Bind with butter and flour cooked together, and season with salt and pepper.
Drain and rinse peas, reserving one-third cup; put remainder in cold water with seasonings, and simmer one-half hour; rub through sieve and add stock. Bind with butter and cornstarch cooked together; boil five minutes. Add milk and reserved peas.
Cook celery, carrot, and onion in one tablespoon butter five minutes; tie in cheesecloth with parsley, cloves, peppercorns, bay leaf, and mace; add to stock with salt and bread crumbs, simmer one hour, remove seasonings, and rub through a sieve. Chop chicken meat and rub through sieve; pound almonds to a paste, add to chicken, then add cream. Combine mixtures, add milk, reheat, and bind with remaining butter and flour cooked together.
Order meat from market, very finely chopped. Pick over and remove particles of fat. Cover meat with water bring slowly to boiling-point, and simmer two hours, skimming occasionally; strain and reheat. Soak sago one-half hour in enough cold water to cover, stir into hot stock, boil thirty minutes, and add milk; then pour mixture slowly on yolks of eggs, slightly beaten. Season with salt and pepper.
Drain and rinse asparagus, reserve tips, and add stalks to cold water; boil five minutes, drain, add stock, and onion; boil thirty minutes, rub through sieve, and bind with butter and flour cooked together. Add salt, pepper, milk, and tips.
Parboil celery in water ten minutes; drain, add stock, cook until celery is soft, and rub through sieve. Scald onion in milk, remove onion, add milk to stock, bind, add cream, and season with salt and pepper.
Wash, pick over, and cook spinach thirty minutes in boiling water to which has been added one-fourth teaspoon powdered sugar and one-eighth teaspoon of soda; drain, chop, and rub through sieve; add stock, heat to boiling-point, bind, add milk, and season with salt and pepper.
Cook onion five minutes in butter, add lettuce, rice, and stock. Cook until rice is soft, then add cream, yolk of egg slightly beaten, nutmeg, salt, and pepper. Remove outer leaves from lettuce, using only tender part for soup.
Clean and chop mushrooms, and add to stock. Cook twenty minutes and rub through a sieve. Cook sago in boiling water thirty minutes, add to stock, and as soon as boiling-point is reached, season with salt and pepper; then add cream and yolks of eggs.
Chop mushrooms, add to White Stock with onion, cook twenty minutes, and rub through a sieve. Reheat, bind with butter and flour cooked together, then add cream and salt and pepper to taste. Just before serving add wine.
Cut finely leaves of watercress; cook five minutes in two tablespoons butter, add stock, and boil five minutes. Thicken with butter and flour cooked together, add salt and pepper. Just before serving, add milk and egg yolk, slightly beaten. Serve with slices of French bread, browned in oven.
Soak cauliflower, head down, one hour in cold water to cover; cook in boiling salted water twenty minutes. Reserve one-half flowerets, and rub remaining cauliflower through sieve. Cook onion, celery, and bay leaf in butter five minutes. Remove bay leaf, then add flour, and stir into hot stock; add cauliflower and milk. Season with salt and pepper; then strain, add flowerets, and reheat.
Peel cucumbers, slice, and remove seeds. Cook in butter ten minutes; then add flour and stock. Scald milk with onion and mace. Combine mixtures and rub through a sieve. Reheat to boiling-point and add cream and egg yolks. Season with salt and pepper.
Blanch, chop, and pound almonds in a mortar. Add gradually water and salt; then add stock, sliced onion, and celery, let simmer one hour, and rub through a sieve. Melt butter, add flour, and pour on gradually the hot liquor; then add milk, cream, and salt and pepper to taste. Serve with Mock Almonds .
Thinly slice two Spanish onions, and cook ten minutes in one-fourth cup butter, stirring constantly. Add one quart White Stock III, cook slowly thirty minutes, and strain. Dilute three tablespoons flour with enough cold water to pour easily, add to soup, and bring to boiling-point. Then add one cup cream, and one tablespoon chopped green peppers, or one-fourth cup grated cheese. Season with salt and pepper.
Remove meat from crabs, and chop finely. Add stock, bread crumbs, onion, and parsley, and simmer twenty minutes. Rub through a sieve, bind with butter and flour cooked together, then add cream and seasonings. Serve with Pulled Bread.
Cook vegetables in three tablespoons butter fifteen minutes; add flour, and stir until well mixed; then add remaining ingredients except cream. Cover, and let cook one hour. Just before serving, add cream and remaining butter.
Cook vegetables and chicken in butter until brown; add flour, curry powder, mace, cloves, parsley, stock, and tomato, and simmer one hour. Strain, reserve chicken, and rub vegetables through sieve. Add chicken to strained soup, season with salt and pepper, and serve with boiled rice.
Clean and wash calfs head; soak one hour in cold water to cover. Cook until tender in three quarts boiling salted water (to which seasoning and vegetables have been added). Remove head; boil stock until reduced to one quart. Strain and cool. Melt and brown butter, add flour, and stir until well browned; then pour on slowly brown stock. Add head-stock, tomato, one cup face-meat cut in dice, and lemon juice. Simmer five minutes; add Royal custard cut in dice, and Egg Balls, or Force-meat Balls. Add Madeira wine, and salt and pepper to taste.
Cut beef in one and one-half inch cubes, and brown one-half in some of the marrow from marrow-bone; put remaining half in kettle with cold water, add veal cut in pieces, browned meat, and bones. Let stand one-half hour. Heat slowly to boiling-point, and let simmer three hours, removing scum as it forms on top of kettle. Add one quart liquor in which a fowl was cooked, and simmer two hours. Cook carrot, turnip, onion, and celery in butter five minutes; then add to soup, with remaining seasonings. Cook one and one-half hours, strain, cool quickly, remove fat, and clear.
Wash and scrub with a brush one-half peck clams, changing the water several times. Put in kettle with three cups cold water, cover tightly, and steam until shells are well opened. Strain liquor, cool, and clear.
Clean oysters by placing in a colander and pouring over them three-fourths cup cold water. Carefully pick over oysters, reserve liquor, and heat it to boiling-point; strain through double cheesecloth, add oysters, and cook until oysters are plump and edges begin to curl. Remove oysters with skimmer, and put in tureen with butter, salt, and pepper. Add oyster liquor strained a second time, and milk. Serve with oyster crackers.
Clean and pick over oysters as for Oyster Stew; reserve liquor, add oysters slightly chopped, heat slowly to boiling-point, and let simmer twenty minutes. Strain through cheesecloth, reheat liquor, and thicken with butter and flour cooked together. Scald milk with onion, celery, mace, parsley, and bay leaf; remove seasonings, and add to oyster liquor. Season with salt and pepper.
Clean, pick over, chop, and parboil oysters; drain, strain through cheesecloth, and add to liquor enough water to make one quart liquid. Brown butter, add flour, and pour on gradually, while stirring constantly, oyster liquor. Let simmer one-half hour. Season with salt, paprika, and celery salt, and just before serving add cream.
Clean, pick over, and parboil oysters; drain, and add oyster liquor to Fish Stock. Cook onion five minutes in one-half the butter; add to stock. Then add okra, tomatoes heated and drained from some of their liquor, oysters, and remaining butter. Season with salt and pepper.
Fish Stock is the liquor obtained by covering the head, tail, skin, bones, and small quantity of flesh adhering to bones of fish, with cold water, bringing slowly to boiling-point, simmering thirty minutes, and straining.
Clean and pick over clams, using three-fourths cup cold water; reserve liquor. Put aside soft part of clams; finely chop hard part, add to liquor, bring gradually to boiling-point, strain through cheesecloth, and thicken with butter and flour cooked together. Scald milk with onion, remove onion, add milk, seasonings, and soft part of clams. Bring to boiling-point and pour over whites of eggs beaten stiff.
Clean and pick over oysters, using one-third cup cold water; reserve liquor, and add oysters slightly chopped. Clean and pick over clams, reserve liquor, and add to hard part of clams, finely chopped; put aside soft part of clams. Heat slowly to boiling-point clams and oysters with liquor from both, let simmer twenty minutes and strain through cheesecloth. Thicken with butter and flour cooked together and add soft part of clams. Scald milk with onion, mace, parsley, and bay leaf; remove seasonings, and add milk to stock. Season with salt and pepper.
Wash two quarts clams in shell. Put in kettle with one-fourth cup cold water, cover, and cook until shells open. Strain liquor through double thickness cheesecloth, add to four cups consommé and clear.
Wash and scrub with a brush two quarts clams, changing water several times. Put in kettle with one-half cup cold water, cover tightly, and steam until shells are well opened. Remove clams from shells and strain liquor through double thickness cheesecloth. To one and two-thirds cups clam liquor add two and one-half cups White Stock III, highly seasoned. Cool, and freeze to a mush. Serve in place of a soup in frappé glasses, and garnish with whipped cream.
Pour water over clams, then drain. To water add hard part of clams finely chopped. Heat slowly to boiling-point, cook twenty minutes, then strain. Cook butter with onion five minutes; remove onion, add flour and gradually clam water. Add cream, soft part of clams, and as soon as boiling-point is reached, tomatoes to which soda has been added. Season with salt and cayenne, and serve at once.
Clean and pick over oysters, reserving liquor, setting aside soft portions, and chopping gills and tough muscles. Cook White Stock, bread crumbs, reserved liquor, chopped oyster, onion, celery, parsley, and bay leaf thirty minutes. Rub through a sieve, bring to boiling-point, and bind with butter and flour cooked together. Add milk, soft portion of oysters, and salt and pepper to taste.
Clean scallops, reserve one-half cup and finely chop remainder. Add these to milk, with seasonings and two tablespoons butter, and cook slowly twenty minutes. Strain and thicken with remaining butter and flour cooked together. Parboil reserved scallops, and add to soup. Serve with small biscuits or oysterettes.
Remove meat from lobster shell. Add cold water to body bones and tough end of claws, cut in pieces; bring slowly to boiling-point, and cook twenty minutes. Drain, reserve liquor, and thicken with butter and flour cooked together. Scald milk with tail meat of lobster, finely chopped; strain, and add to liquor. Season with salt and cayenne; then add tender claw meat, cut in dice, and body meat. When coral is found in lobster, wash, wipe, force through fine strainer, put in a mortar with butter, work until well blended, then add flour, and stir into soup. If a richer soup is desired, White Stock may be used in place of water.