#17: Digging through old cookbooks for soup recipes

I took advantage of the recent cold weather to dig through my extensive cookbook collection for soup recipes.  I love old cookbooks for their language, old ingredients, and especially their technicolor pictures.    One can tell a lot about the social customs of the time by perusing through these bright pages.

I pulled down one of my Grandmother’s books, the Farm Journal’s Country Cookbook from 1959.  I love the way this cookbook is organized:  “Dishes to Tote,” “Cooking for a Crowd,” and “Money-Maker Recipes.”  In the “From the Garden” section I found a recipe for Green Bean Soup.  Since it made a batch for 8 to 10 servings and it used a ham bone, I changed up the recipe a bit by halving it and using bacon.

Green Bean Soup

1/2 lb. lean bacon, cut into pieces
1/2 c. small white onion, minced
2 c. water
2 c. chicken stock or vegetable stock
7  whole allspice
1/4 t. dried thyme (not ground)
4 sprigs parsley, or 1 t. dried parsley
3/4 c. diced potatoes
1 c. green beans, cut into small bite-size pieces (I used what I had put up in the freezer last summer.)
1/4 c. light cream
1/2 T. butter
1 t. salt

In a large sauce pan, cook bacon until crisp.  Remove and drain on paper towels.  In 2 T. of the bacon fat, saute onions.  Add water and stock.  Place allspice, fresh parsley, and thyme in a tea or spice ball and add to soup pot.  Add potatoes and beans and cook until tender, 20 to 30 minutes.  Remove spice ball. 

Just before serving, stir in cream butter and salt.
Green Beans

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My Favorite Reads

Eat, Pray, Love
Running with Scissors
SantaLand Diaries
Me Talk Pretty One Day
Angela's Ashes
Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim
Kitchen Confidential: Adventures in the Culinary Underbelly
My Life in France
Julie and Julia: 365 Days, 524 Recipes, 1 Tiny Apartment Kitchen: How One Girl Risked Her Marriage, Her Job, and Her Sanity to Master the Art of Living
Garlic and Sapphires: The Secret Life of a Critic in Disguise
A Homemade Life: Stories and Recipes from My Kitchen Table
Tender at the Bone: Growing Up at the Table
The Liars' Club
Code Name Verity
The Paris Wife
The Shoemaker's Wife
The Secret Book of Frida Kahlo: A Novel
Brother of the More Famous Jack
Burying the Honeysuckle Girls

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