COOTER SOUP

(I doubt if he's actually tried this, but from ARON: This is from Charleston Receipts - America's Oldest Junior League Cookbook. Receipts? What the fuck? I hear your pain, so I quote this -- a lovely verse from page 4:
Throughout this book, as you will see,
We never mention recipe, -
The reason being that we felt,
(Though well aware how it is spelt!),
That it is modern and not meet
To use in place of old receipt
To designate time-honored dishes
According to ancestral wishes.
                     -- L.F.K.

And with that I present... COOTER SOUP

INGREDIENTS:
1 large or 2 small "yellow belly" cooters (preferably female)
(a cooter is a turtle)
1 large onion, chopped
Salt to taste
2 teaspoons allspice
Red pepper to taste
3 tablespoons dry sherry
4 quarts of water
1 small Irish potato, diced
12 whole cloves
2 tablespoons Worcestershire
Flour to thicken

DIRECTIONS:

Kill cooter by chopping off head. Let it stand inverted until thoroughly drained, then plunge into boiling water for five minutes. Crack the shell all around very carefully, so as not to cut the eggs which are lodged near the surface. The edible parts are the front and hind quarters and a strip of white meat adhering to the back of the shell, the liver and the eggs. Remove all outer skin which peels off easily if water is hot enough. Wash thoroughly and allow to stand in cold water a short while, or place in refrigerator over night.

Boil cooter meat, onion and potato in the water, and cook until meat drops from the bones - about 2 hours. Remove all bones and skin and cut meat up with scissors. Return meat to stock, add spices and simmer. Brown flour in skillet, mix with 1 cup of stock to smooth paste and thicken soup. Twenty minutes before serving add cooter eggs. Add sherry and garnish with thin slices of lemon. Serves 6-8.

Mrs. Clarence Steinhart (Kitty Ford)

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