Peasant Vegetable Soup Recipe

The vegetables for soups of this type are cut into various shapes, usually julienne or paysanne. As these soups are not passed to make into a purée, all the vegetables are cut properly before cooking.

Where potatoes are included in the recipe they are always added after the liquid. Fresh peas, beans and farinaceous ingredients are added at the later stages of the cooking process.

Clear vegetable soups may be served in a soup tureen or soup plate.

Makes: 2 liters. Cooking time: 1 hour.

Ingredients:

— 75 grams butter
— 75 grams carrots
— 75 grams turnips
— 75 grams leek
— 75 grams celery
— 75 grams onion
— 2 liters White Stock
— 1 bouquet garni
— 50 grams french peas, cut into diamonds
— 50 grams peas
— chopped parsely
— seasoning of salt and pepper

Method

(1) Melt the butter in a deep saucepan and sweat the paysanne of vegetables.
(2) Add the stock, bring to the boil and skim. (3) Add the bouquet garni and seasoning.
(4) Simmer gently until the vegetables are cooked (approximately 20 minutes).
(5) Add the french beans and peas; simmer for a further 15 minutes until they are cooked.
(6) Remove the bouquet garni and skim all traces of fat from the surface.
(7) Season to taste, add the parsley and check the ratio of ingredients to liquid.

Note:
To test if cooked remove a selection of the vegetables with a perforated spoon and test for softness by squeezing between the fingers, paying special attention to those ingredients added in the later stages of making the soup.

Assessment of the completed dish:

(1) Soup should be served as hot as possible.
(2) Liquid should be clear, white and free from traces of fat on the surface.
(3) Vegetables should be cut evenly to a size that will enable several to fit into the soup spoon.
(4) The flavor should be a combination of all vegetables, not taste predominantly of one.
(5) Seasoning should be such that it brings out the full flavor of all the ingredients.
(6) The correct ratio of vegetables to liquid should be one-third vegetables to two-thirds liquid.
(7) A standard portion should be approximately 2 dl per person.

Possible problems, causes and solution:

(1) Soup liquid is off-white in color
— Vegetables allowed to color during sweating; care must be taken to avoid this as it cannot be rectified later.
— wrong color stock used; ensure the correct ingredients are used as this cannot be rectified later.
— butter allowed to turn brown after melting before adding the vegetables; take care to
avoid this as it cannot be rectified later.

(2) Soup lacks flavor or the color is distorted
— vegetables not sweated correctly; care must be taken to follow the correct procedure when sweating the vegetables as this cannot be rectified later.
— poor quality stock used; care must be taken in the preparation of the stock as this cannot
be rectified later.
— soup under-seasoned; add more seasoning to taste.
— incorrect proportions of vegetables giving rise to the dominance of one particular flavor; care must be taken when measuring out the ingredients as this cannot be rectified later.

(3) Soup liquid is cloudy
— poor quality stock used; care must be taken in the preparation of the stock as this cannot be rectified later.
— soup has been allowed to boil rapidly causing the vegetables to mash; care must be taken to avoid this as it cannot be rectified later.
— soup not skimmed during cooking; care must be taken to follow the correct procedures in the preparation of the soup as this cannot be rectified later.

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