Sunday, April 10, 2011

Rivel Soup

Rivel soup appears to be a German-Menonite creation. Wikipedia, amazingly enough, did not have a definition for me, and their question software is too annoying to penetrate. However, there are many recipes for it on the internet, and the ones I looked at made mention of a German or Memonite origin. Rivels would be noodles if they had a shape. They are little bits of flour egg dough dropped into the soup. This is a tasty, easy soup to make, except the rivels need more than one egg yolk to be made into anything. Try two egg yolks, and then you may still need a little water.

Rivel Soup

1 cup flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 egg yolk
8 cups boiling chicken broth
1 cup corn kernels (freshly cut from cob, it says. If not that time of year, use frozen)
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

1. Place the flour and salt in a bowl. Add the egg yolk and with the fingers work together until mixture is crumbly.
2. Add the crumbs, a few at a time, to the boiling broth. Add the corn, salt and pepper and boil ten servings. Makes six servings.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Winy Apple-Raisin Pie

I had planned to make this back in the fall. Son and fiance had gone apple picking at Homestead Farm in Poolesville, where they have many varieties of apples, including tart pie apples. They kindly bought me some, but I never got it together to make Winy-Raisin Apple Pie. What I did have was the vermouth.

We are not martini drinkers in this house, except for son, who orders these exotic drinks from the past when we go out to dinner. The rest of us stick with humble, average white wine. When I did drink hard liquor, I drank Bourbon and orange juice, which earned me a raised eyebrow and a dusty bottle from the rest of my family. So anyway, although vermouth was a staple in my parents' house, it was not something you were likely to find on the bar in my house.

I made the pie for my husband's church potluck. He had signed me up for desert, so I couldn't work in either shellfish or eggplant or both. It also had to be made in about an hour and a half, because I was riding in the morning, and then we had to go out to Ikea in College Park to buy a single bed for daughter's room.

So I called husband when I left the barn and asked him to A. find me a recipe and B. figure out what I needed to buy. I told him I would call him again when I got to Potomac and stop to buy the ingredients.

He chose this one, which was certainly quicker than a cake, or cheesecake, which were the other choices. I bought the apples and dig it guys, ready made pie crust. This stuff is the best convenience food ever, and much better than what I ever made. After we got back from Ikea with a carload of boxed furniture, I got to work and whipped it out.It was very good and answers the question of whether you can make an apple pie with Granny Smith apples. You can,.

This calls for a latticework crust. If you don't know what that is, it's the crust that looks like an openwork basket. My husband did it, and instead of weaving the crust the way Joy of Cooking says to do, he just laid the strips going one way over the strips going the other way. It's definitely an option.

Winy Apple-Raisin Pie

Pastry for a two-crust ten-inch pie

1 tablespoon butter

1/4 cup dry vermouth (Martini and Rossi)

1 cup golden raisins

6 cups peeled, sliced tart apples

1 tablespoon lemon juice

3/4 cup light brown sugar

1/2 cup granulated sugar

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon allspice

sweetened whipped cream

1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

2. Roll out half the pastry and use it to line a ten-inch pie dish. Reserve remaining pastry for the top.

3. Heat the butter and vermouth in a saucepan and add the raisins. Simmer until raisins are soft. Drain and set aside.

4. Combine the apples, lemon juice, brown sugar, granulated sugar, cinnamon, allspice and nutmeg. Add raisins and toss lightly. Pour mixture into the pie dish. Roll out remaining pastry and make a lattice work top for pie. Bake about forty minutes, or until crust is golden brown. If desired, serve with sweetened whipped cream on the side. Serves 6-10.

Cheese Soup

I am discovering, in the need to crank these recipes out, that many of the soups make a nice dinner on Sunday night and don't take too much time. Of course, I don't get to write up the recipe until the following Friday when things simmer down, but nevertheless, they get cooked, and we have something different to eat.

So, Sunday evening, we had Cheese Soup, from, where else, Vermont. It took about half an hour, and was tasty and required no weird ingredients that could not be purchased at Safeway. I highly recommend it in these last few weeks of cold wet weather before it gets hot. I just made it with Safeway extra sharp Cheddar, but if you had Vermont Cheddar, I bet this would be really good.

2 tablespoons butter

1 onion, finely chopped

2 tablespoons flour

3/4 cup chicken broth

4 cups milk, scalded

3/4 pound finely grated sharp Cheddar cheese

1/8 teaspoon dry mustard

1/2 teaspoon celery salt

1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1. Melt the butter in a heavy saucepan and saute the onion in it until tender. Sprinkle the flour over all and cook two minutes.

2. Gradually stir in the broth and milk. Bring to a boil.

3. Add these cheese, mustard, celery salt, Worcestershire and pepper ad stir until cheese is melted. Remove from the heat and serve immediately.
Serves 6.