Prepare a fowl for cooking. Separate it at the joints and cut it into small pieces. Put the meat into a saucepan with three pints of water and cook it slowly from 2 to 3 hours, or until very tender. Then take out the meat, let the liquor continue to boil, and to it add two tablespoonfuls of rice, two tablespoonfuls of finely cut onion, which has been fried in a little butter until soft, but not brown, and three peppercorns. Remove the gristle from the meat and put the meat, with one tea-spoonful of salt, into the soup, and simmer until the rice is very soft. A little white pepper and celery salt may be added, if desired. If the water boils away during the cooking, add more boiling water. Serve the soup with croutons.