Winter is the time for…

It seems like a lot of the recent posts here on Blogski are about bus service, or the snow.  Which are both things we are definitely interested in right now.  But it seems like high time for some posts about other winter concerns, like, say…warm socks, or the best long underwear, or…soup.

Yeah, soup!  Lots of us have a favorite recipe or two.  Here are two from Our Best Home Cooking,  the fundraiser cookbook that the PHCA put together years ago.  There are a number of soup recipes in the book, and our apologies to the vegetarians, but these were just so traditional and interesting…

They’re written in a simple style that leaves some quantities up to you — and note that water, salt and pepper aren’t mentioned at all.   You could figure on about 3 quarts of water.

Polish Duck Soup (Czarnina)

1 duck with blood                1/3 cup vinegar
1 lb unpitted prunes            flour
1 cinnamon stick                   celery, carrots, onion
1 bay leaf

Cook duck as you would for chicken soup.  Halfway through, add prunes, cinnamon stick, and bay leaf.  Continue to cook.  When duck is tender and completely cooked, remove from soup.  Add 1/4 to 1/3 cup vinegar to blood.  Add flour to thicken blood.  Slowly add to soup and continue to cook 30 minutes to an hour more.  Serve with noodles.

Fake Duck Soup (Mock Czarnina)

1  1/2 -2 lbs pork neck bones              celery, carrots, onion
1 qt prune juice                                        1  1/2 cups apple butter
1 lb prunes                                                  1/4 cup vinegar
1 cinnamon stick                                       1 tsp peppercorns (tie in cheesecloth)
1 bay leaf

Cook neckbones, celery, carrots, and onion.  Add bay leaf and peppercorns.  cook on low heat for 2- 2 1/2 hours.  Add prune juice, prunes, apple butter and cinnamon stick.  Add 1/4 cup vinegar or more to taste.  Continue to cook until neckbones are tender.  Remove neckbones from soup.  Serve with noodles.

We’ve almost completely sold out of Our Best Home Cooking. If you’re interested in getting a copy, act soon!  It’s just $5 (plus $2.50 for shipping) and you can order by emailing, checking our website, or calling us at 412.681.1950.   Or just stop by the office between 10-6 pm, Tuesday through Saturday and save the shipping fee.

(photo by Nick Pietraniec via Flickr)