Friday, August 29, 2008

Family Tradition

Every year in August my Grandma Schaefer would make "Bean Soup" and have everyone over for supper. It was something we all looked forward to because it was the only time of the year we got Grandma's bean soup. I can remember eating it until my stomach hurt and of course until I was sweating because we were eating hot soup in the hot month of August! It was always complete with some fresh baked bread and probably something good for dessert.

A church member gave Aaron a bunch of fresh green beans and they sat on our counter for a few days until I thought of what to do with them.... Well I didn't have to think too much because of course I wanted bean soup! Yes, it is bean soup made with string beans (grandma used green and/or yellow).

I knew someone in the family would have the recipe so I turned to the most obvious choices... Grandma's daughters Judy and Kathy. They both sent me the version of the recipe that they had. The quantities in the one from Judy more closely matched what I had so I went with that one. It is as follows:

3 quarts yellow beans cut in small pieces. 1 qt potatoes cut small. Boil together until both are soft. Add 2 1/2 qts milk. Bring to boil and thicken with flour and water. Just before serving add dollop of sour cream. Some people like to add a little vinegar, salt and pepper to taste.

I did have to make one emergency call to my mom because I didn't know if I should drain the water and then add the milk or just add the milk to the water/beans/potato mixture. She said definitely to drain the water off first and then told me how to make the flour/water paste to thicken the soup. Oh and I left out the sour cream because I didn't have any.

After doing those things I seasoned it to taste with a few shots of vinegar, lots of freshly ground black pepper and lots of salt.

It turned out perfect in spite of my shortcomings as a cook. Aaron thought it was pretty good although he didn't have the same connection to it like I do. Then I took it to work and the girls there ate some and thought it was good.

And to top it all off I made some apple crisp (first attempt at that with a recipe from - great web site, love it) and even that turned out good!

I'm sure Grandma was pleased with my culinary skills!

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