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Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Potato Pickle Soup is Good!

A few days ago, I asked for opinions of this (to me) weird sounding concoction. I made it a few days ago, and it is GOOD. The whole pot probably cost less than $1.00. I had some potatoes I bought cheaply for Thanksgiving (ditto the carrots). We had scallions in the garden. Frugal Son bought a big jar of pickles for $1.00.

So this is yet one more incarnation of one of my favorite food categories: the food of the poor. How wonderful to think of Polish peasants--cold and damp, craving SOMETHING tasty in the winter--making this stone soup.

This is definitely comfort food.

P.S. I left out the dill because I didn't have any.

4 large Yukon Gold or Yellow Finn potatoes (skins intact)
1 large carrot, chopped
2 tablespoons butter
1 bunch scallions, chopped
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
1 teaspoon mustard seeds
4 sprigs fresh dill (leaves only), chopped
4 half-sour pickles, chopped
1 cup pickling liquid from the jar of half-sours
Salt and pepper, to taste

1. In a pot just large enough to accommodate them in a single layer, fit the potatoes and carrots. Add enough cold water to just cover them. Bring to a boil, cover with the lid, and cook for 30 to 35 minutes, or until the potatoes can be easily pierced with a skewer.

2. In a soup pot, melt the butter over medium heat. Stir in the scallions, garlic, and mustard seeds. Cook gently, stirring often, for 5 minutes or until the garlic is soft and fragrant but not colored.

3. With a slotted spoon, transfer the carrots to the scallion mixture; set aside.

4. Remove the potatoes from their cooking liquid (set the liquid aside). When the potatoes are cool enough to handle, slip off their skins. Quarter the potatoes and return them to the potato water. Sprinkle with dill. With the edge of a wooden spoon, chop and mash the potatoes. There should be lots of potato chunks, none very large.

5. Tip the potato mixture into the carrot mixture. Add the pickles and pickling liquid. Bring to a simmer, and cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes.

6. If the soup is too thick for your taste, add a little more pickling liquid, or milk or water. Taste for seasoning, add salt and plenty of pepper. - Adapted from John Thorne

I LOVE Thorne's writing. This is his first book.


Lisa said...

Sounds interesting!

Shelley said...

I'm so impressed you tried it! Poor folks food is some of the best. Mind, at one time lobster was considered poor folks food (not that I'm a huge fan). Glad it worked out well. What if it had been awful? Would you have chucked it out?