Hello, dear Readers. Sorry for the rather long absence. I have not forgotten about you. I've just had a severe lack of inspiration. But I return to you with a soup that comes back to beckon me every once in a while. It was a soup that my parents cooked in my childhood, and it somehow lovingly locked into my brain. It's a simple recipe, and I remember my dad one day opening the pot to let me peek into it and smell the lovely aroma before telling me how to cook it. We stopped cooking it later in the years, but I would occasionally query my parents, either out of the blue or when I suddenly see the huge pot that was specifically used for it. Somehow, we just never got around to cooking it again.
Many many years later, nursing a cold, I suddenly craved soup with large chunks of vegetable in it. All the soups in France seem to be pureed one way or another. This soup was what came to mind, and after so many years, I buckled down and cooked it. Soups really are so easy, yet it can always take an effort to drive one to make it.
As for the name, directly translated from Chinese, it is indeed called "Russian Soup". I hope you'll find it as warming, spiritually and physically, as I.
Chinese "Russian" Vegetable Soup (Serves 2)
- 100-200g ox or veal tail bone
- 1 small onion
- 2 round tomatoes
- 2 carrots
- 3 stalks of celery
- optional potatoes
- optional corn (I forgot!)
- water or stock
- Evenly dice or chop all the vegetables.
- The tail bones can be browned before cooking to bring out more flavour. Otherwise, I just put them in a large pot of water and bring to a simmer.
- Add all the vegetables with a dash of ground pepper.
- Simmer for at least 1.5-2 hours. (I only stewed mine for 1 hour, and the flavour wasn't as rich as possible nor were the tail bone meat falling-off-tender.)
- Add salt to taste.