Tuesday, February 5, 2019

San Francisco Old-Time Minestrone Soup (1867)

  • 4 vegetables of the season, sliced
  • 4 tbspns bacon drippings
  • 1-1/2 tspns salt
  • Coarsely ground pepper, to taste
  • 2 tbspns flour
  • 5 cups beef stock
  • 1 cup dry red wine
  • 1/4 cup diced salt pork
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 2 tspns celery seeds
  • 1 potato, peeled and sliced
  • 6 medium tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup kidney beans, cooked
  • 1/2 up garbanzo beans, cooked
  • 1 cup small imported pasta
  • Spices and other additions, as desired
In a large pot, braise the seasonal vegetables to be used (such as zucchini, squash, and carrots) in the drippings. Add salt and pepper, and enough flour to thicken the mixture slightly, and stir it well.

Add the soup stock, red wine, pork, bay leaves, garlic and celery seeds. Simmer these ingredients for about 2 hours over a very low heat. Add potato, tomatoes, and beans. When the potato is almost tender, add the small pasta. Cook the soup until the pasta is tender.

Remove the bay leaves before serving the minestrone. This soup ages very well, and it tastes richer when rewarmed. Other spices and ingredients can be added or substituted to the cook's taste, and, in fact, such adaptations are traditional. 

Nothing substitutes for homemade beef stock, of course, but canned stock may be used when time is essential. Serves 6 to 8.

More "Lost" San Francisco Recipes
Souffle Grand Marnier (1969)
Old-Style San Francisco French Onion Soup (1884)

(Origin - "Sumptuous Dining in Gaslight San Francisco" by Frances de  Talavera Berger and John Parks Custis, 1985. This dish was served by Maye's Oyster House, on Polk Street in San Francisco, from 1867 to present day.) 

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