Winter Soup

The day before you make the soup, get a fore-leg or shin of beef. Have the bone sawed through in several places, and the meat notched or scored down to the bone. This will cause the juice or essence to come out more freely, when cooked. Rub it slightly with salt; cover it, and set it away. Next morning, early as possible, as soon as the fire is well made up, put the beef into a large soup-pot, allowing to each pound a small quart of water. Then taste the water, and if the salt that has been rubbed on the meat is not sufficient, add a very little more. Throw in also a tea-spoonful of whole pepper-corns; and you may add half a dozen blades of mace. Let it simmer slowly till it comes to a boil; then skim it well. After it boils, you may quicken the fire. At nine o'clock put in a large head of cabbage cut fine as for cold-slaw; a dozen carrots sliced; the leaves stripped from a bunch of sweet-marjoram; and the leaves of a sprig of parsley minced fine. An hour afterwards, add six turnips, and three potatoes, all cut into four or eight pieces. Also two onions, which will be better if previously roasted brown, and then sliced. Keep the soup boiling steadily, but not hard, unless the dinner hour is very early. For a late dinner, there will be time to boil it slowly all the while; and all soups are the better for long and slow boiling. See that it is well skimmed, so that, when done, there will be not a particle of fat or scum on the surface. At dinner-time take it up with a large ladle, and transfer it to a tureen. In doing so, carefully avoid the shreds of meat and bone. Leave them all in the bottom of the pot, pressing them down with the ladle. A mass of shreds in the tureen or soup-plate looks slovenly and disgusting, and should never be seen at the table; also, they absorb too much of the liquid. Let the vegetables remain in the soup when it is served up, but pick out every shred of meat or bone that may be found in the tureen when ready to go to table.

In very cold weather, what is left of this soup will keep till the second day; when it must be simmered again over the fire, till it just comes to a boil. Pat it away in a tin or stone vessel. The lead which is used in glazing earthen jars frequently communicates its poison to liquids that are kept in them.