This recipe is adapted from one in The Ultimate Soup Bible by Anne Sheasby. My Dave gave it to me last Christmas and so far this soup is my fave from the book.

See the snow in the background?!

See the snow in the background?!

The book calls it Grandfather’s Soup, which always leaves me wondering if there has ever been a grandfather in the history of time who knew how to make soup. I mean, that’s grandma territory, right? Still, I like the name because it sounds like there’s a story behind it. A story that you could easily make up and use to impress someone who’s eating the soup.

So, just for giggles, I timed myself when I made this because every time I throw it together I’m always amazed by how quick it is. I gotta say – at a cool 38 minutes, including time to stop and take pictures every second, that’s pretty good. And I didn’t fudge it like Rachael Ray does, with all of my ingredients prepared and measured out by my minions before she starts the timer.

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Soup Ingredients:
1 large onion, thinly sliced
3 medium potatoes (about one pound), diced*
2 tablespoons butter
4 cups chicken stock**
Some marjoram, coriander, dill, or whatever spices you like***
Salt and pepper 

* The original recipe says to peel the ‘taters, but I say that’s boring and also not as good
** Original recipe calls for beef stock. You could also use veggie stock if my dad is coming over for dinner.
*** The original recipe calls for a bay leaf, but I didn’t have one. Apparently thyme can be substituted for a bay leaf, but I didn’t have any of that either

 

Dumpling ingredients:

2/3 cup self-rising flour*

1 T butter

1 egg

Pinch of salt

1 tsp Dried or 1 T fresh chopped parsley**

* If you don’t have self-rising flour, you can make your own with 1.5 teaspoons of baking soda, 1 cup of all-purpose flour, and a half teaspoon of salt – just make sure you measure out your 2/3 cup of the mixture when you’re ready to make the dumplings
 ** Didn’t have fresh parsley, which the recipe calls for, so I used 1 teaspoon of dried 

The instructions are ridonkulously easy. Just take out your biggest pan, put the 2 tablespoons of butter in it over medium heat, and dump your onions in. Sautee them until they’re getting soft and brown, about 10 minutes. While you’re sauteeing the onions, dice your potatoes.

 

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When the onions are ready, dump in your potatoes and continue to sautee for about 2 or 3 minutes.

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Then, dump in your broth. To save making a dirty dish, just measure water in your measuring cup and plunk the right amount of boullion directly into the pot. I use this stuff in a jar called Better Than Boullion, which looks like a cross between peanut butter and applesauce. It comes in all flaves, so booyah. Bring everything to a boil, then add your pepper and herbs (I didn’t add any salt because there’s plenty in the broth I used, so salt to taste). Reduce to a simmer and cover.

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Now! Here’s the easy/fun part that makes this soup so amazing. Sift the flour and salt into a bowl. Add the tablespoon of butter and use your pastry mixer or two knives to cut the butter into the flour (the recipe says to “rub in” the butter but I couldn’t for the life of me visualize what the H that meant, so I ignored it). Add the parsley and the egg. You’re supposed to beat the egg before adding it, but again, I didn’t feel like making an extra dirty dish – so I made a little cup in the flour/butter mixture and beat the egg there.

 

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Like pie dough, this dough seems dry as you’re mixing it. Here’s as far as I got with my spatula:

 

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I ended up digging in and using my hands to get it into a ball.

 

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Next, take your 1/2 teaspoon measure and make leedle balls of dough, plopping them into the soup as you go. Try not to make them too big, or they’re a bit dry (although still delish) in the center.

 

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You can see how some of the balls are already starting to expand, while others have just been added to the soup (there’s one in the upper-right part of the pot that I just added before snapping this picture).

 

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When you’ve used all of the dough, re-cover the pot and let it sit for about 10 minutes or so. Then serve it with a ladle and be like “WOAH, I just started making this half an HOUR ago! It tastes like it took ALL DAY to make!”

 

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Note: If you don’t end up eating it all in one sitting, you might find that it’s not brothy enough as you go. We had this for lunch and dinner the day I made it, and by dinner the broth had depleted, so I dumped in a cup or two of chicken broth (I eyeballed it).

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