Unless your dinner hour is very late, the stock for this soup should be made the day before it is wanted, and set away in a stone pan, closely covered. To make the stock, take a knuckle of veal, break the bones, and cut it into several pieces. Allow a quart of water to each pound of veal. Put it into a soup-pot, with a set of calves-feet, and some bits of cold ham, cut off near the hock. If you have no ham, sprinkle in a table-spoonful of salt, and a salt-spoon of cayenne. Place the pot over a moderate fire, and let it simmer slowly (skimming it well) for several hours, till the veal is all to rags and the flesh of the calves-feet has dropped in shreds from the bones. Then strain the soup; and if not wanted that day, set it away in a stone pan, as above mentioned.
Next day have ready-boiled two quarts or more of green peas, (they must on no account be old,) and a pint of the green tops cut off from asparagus boiled for the purpose. Pound a handful of raw spinach till you have extracted a teacup-full of the juice. Set the soup or stock over the fire; add the peas, asparagus, and spinach-juice, stirring them well in; also a quarter of a pound of fresh butter, divided into four bits, and rolled in flour. Let the whole come to a boil; and then take it off and transfer it to a tureen. It will be found excellent.
In boiling the peas for this soup, you may put with them half a dozen sprigs of green mint, to be afterwards taken out.
Late in the spring you may add to the other vegetables two cucumbers, pared and sliced, and the whitest part or heart of a lettuce, boiled together; then well-drained, and put into the soup with the peas and asparagus. It must be very thick with vegetables.
Take a large neck of mutton, and hack it so as nearly to cut it apart, but not quite. Allow a small quart of water to each pound of meat, and sprinkle on a table-spoonful of salt and a very little black pepper. Put it into a soup-pot, and boil it slowly (skimming it well) till the meat is reduced to rags. Then strain the liquid, return it to the soup-pot, and carefully remove all the fat from the surface. Have ready half a dozen small turnips sliced thin, two young onions sliced, a table-spoonful of sweet-marjoram leaves picked from the stalks, and a quart of shelled Lima beans. Put in the vegetables, and boil them in the soup till they are thoroughly done. You may add to them two table-spoonfuls of green nasturtian seeds, either fresh or pickled. Put in also some little dumplings, (made of flour and butter,) about ten minutes before the soup is done.
This soup may be made of a shoulder of mutton, cut into pieces and the bones cracked.
Begin this soup as early in the day as possible. Take six pounds of the lean of fine fresh beef; cut it into small pieces; sprinkle it with a lea-spoonful of salt, (not more); put it into a soup-pot, and pour on six quarts of water. The hock of a cold ham will greatly improve it. Set it over a moderate fire, and let it boil slowly. After it comes to a boil skim it well. Have ready a quarter of a peck of ochras cut into very thin round slices, and a quarter of a peck of tomatoes cut into pieces; also a quart of shelled Lima beans. Season them with pepper. Put them in; and after the whole has boiled three hours at least, take six ears of young Indian corn, and having grated off all the grain, add them to the soup and boil it an hour longer. Before you serve up the soup remove from it all the bits of meat, which, if the soup is sufficiently cooked, will be reduced to shreds.
You may put in with the ochras and tomatoes one or two sliced onions. The soup, when done, should be as thick as a jelly.
Ochras for soup may be kept all winter, by tying them separately to a line stretched high across the store-room.