All the music today is by Scott Bradlee & Postmodern Jukebox. A true phenomenon – that I will sadly have to give a miss when they play in Copenhagen soon… Go look them up on their own site or Youtube – or indeed Spotify, from where they entertain while this bit of cooking is being done.
That said, let’s start off in the blog-administrative end of things. Soup like this is easy combined with writing – not much hands-on time but lots of quiet boily-bubbling time that allows sneaking in front of the computer. Many of the other CCM entries are written on the iPad in the kitchen and just may be edited and receive the finishing touches on a bigger screen.
Then, a question of vocabulary – or butchery. Or both. I have some difficulty figuring out what to call the cut of beef I am going to plop into a pot in a wee while in proper English. Have a look at the illustration here to decide – a Danish cow to the left and a USAian/UKian one on the right. It’s #12 we’re going for…
Actually, what you want is one of the fat-marbled, cheap cuts. And a bunch of bones.
Right. Take a big pot (we use one that holds 10 liters). Fill a couple of liters of water in it, bring it to a boil. Meanwhile fill the electric kettle and have that boiling, too. Put the meat and the bones in the pot when it’s at a boil, pour the water from the kettle over. You’ll want the meat and bones just covered. Let it get back to a boil then cut back on the heat. Spend some time skimming the protein gunk that comes form the meat and bones – and be happy that because you started in boiling water, there’ll be less and it’ll be done away with faster. You’ll end up with a clearer soup that way.
- Careless Whisper (Wham!)
- Livin’ On A Prayer (Bon Jovi)
Peel and cut an onion or two, cut in quarts. A leek or two in chunks – and, likewise, a few carrots, some parsley root and celeriac. Plop the vegetables into the pot and add 8-10-12 black pepper corns as well as some parsley and thyme.
Now, let the whole thing boil – gently! – for about three hours time. If it boils too hard, the meat will get hard as well – but if it just simmers, by the end of it, it’ll be falling to tender juicy pieces all by iself. Mmmmmm…
Once the soup’s had enough, just fish out all the major pieces – the meat is the only thing to hold on to, so set that aside and the rest goes in the bin as it has all served its purpose and has no more to offer in this world.
Pass the soup through a colander or a kitchen sieve to clear it up from the pepper and whatever else. This will make several servings so at this point we put some in containers that go in the freezer.
For what’s to be eaten now, I’ll take a suitable portion in a smaller pot, add some cubed carrot and let it get back to a quiet boil for 5-10 minutes while seasoning, especially with salt. I usually do not salt the big pot – if some of the soup will be reduced to fond (or stock, if you’re not that francophile) it may easily get too salt.
The some of the meat gets cut or plucked into small, mouth-sized bits and pieces and get thrown in along with greem peas. Depending on mood, we may boil some soup pasta and add – today, there’s also fresh baked bread, so that’ll do fine.
Serve in nice bowls and enjoy – with a good, maybe semi-dark beer or a decent red wine.
- All About That Bass (Meghan Trainor – only, in this version, the singer … actually plays upright bass!)