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How to Prepare Excellent Soup

Nov 25, 2007
Most good soups require a very long time to prepare. There are, however, a number of things one can do to already prepared soups to make them much better, and there are several ways of combining two or more commercial soups which will make the final product a thing of beauty and, if not a joy forever, at least a joy every time you taste it.

Cheese Soup - Serves 6

This is a rich, thick, full-bodied soup, ideal for luncheon on cold days, or for supper following an afternoon's skating or other cold-weather sport. It is also a fine dish to serve after a late party when the host, hostess, and a few favored guests sit down to rest and to a little snack before closing up the affair finally. If you wish to use it as a cream soup preceding a meal rather than as a meal itself, dilute it just before serving with a little hot milk. This soup is not for calorie counters.

3 pints mil
2 cloves garlic
4 tablespoons butter
4 tablespoons flour
4 egg yolks
1/4 cup whipping cream
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 teaspoon ground cumin
2 cups dry white wine
2 cups sharp cheese, grated

Scald the milk and gash the garlic. Melt the butter in the top of a double boiler, stir in the flour with a wooden spoon and blend into a roux, cooking over a low fire for about five minutes, stirring constantly. Gradually add the scalded milk to the roux, blending it well to avoid lumps. Add the garlic. Have the water boiling in the lower half of the double boiler, place the top half over it, and cook covered for twenty minutes, stirring occasionally.

Beat the egg yolks lightly with the cream or mix in a swirl mixer. Remove the garlic. Add salt, pepper, cumin, the white wine, and the grated cheese. Stir constantly until the cheese has melted. Add the egg yolks and cream, and continue to cook and stir for three or four minutes. Serve in soup cups, each garnished with a small sprig of parsley.

French bread, a little dark as to crust, or crusty hot rolls should be served with the soup.

Clam Mongole - Serves 4

This recipe is a variation of and, I think, an improvement on a very well-known soup: Puree Mongole. Recipes for Puree Mongole vary but little, and are based on combining tomato and green pea soups in equal quantities. The use of condensed cream of tomato and cream of pea makes this a quick and easy dish for the harassed chef, or for one who is not. The combination is usually diluted by the addition of water, or water and consomme.

The result is a rich, filling, and pleasant brew which can be served as part of an elaborate meal, or will make, with the addition of a salad, an acceptable light luncheon. Clam Mongole is even better suited to the latter purpose, and is, at the same time, an unusual and appealing soup course for a dinner. The use of milk in the following recipe will give you a thicker and richer blend. You may, of course, control the consistency of the final product by varying the quantity of milk or water.

1 tin condensed cream of tomato soup
1 tin condensed pea soup
1 tin minced clams
1 cup water or milk
4 dashes scotch bonnet

Place the two soups in a saucepan, drain the clams, and add the juice to the soups. Over a low fire and using a wire whisk, stir the mixture until it is smooth. Gradually add the other liquid, stirring all the while. When the soup has reached the consistency you like, add the clams and bring to a boil, but do not let boil. Add the Scotch Bonnet, stir well, and serve at once, very hot. Carr's Table Water Biscuits make an ideal accompaniment.

Either of these soups will be a welcome addition to your table.
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