Sour Soup (for Purim) Recipe

Sour Soup, also known as "Sour Meat Soup," is a classic dish enjoyed during the Jewish holiday of Purim. This hearty and tangy soup has been a part of Jewish cuisine for centuries. The recipe combines tender soup meat, bones, and a variety of vegetables, creating a deliciously satisfying meal.

Historically, Purim is a festive holiday that celebrates the Jewish people's deliverance from a plot to exterminate them in ancient Persia. It is customary to celebrate with feasts and gift-giving. Sour Soup is a popular dish during this time, as its flavors symbolize the ups and downs of the Purim story. The sour taste represents the bitter struggles of the Jewish people, while the sweetness signifies their ultimate triumph.

Fun Fact: The tradition of eating sour foods like Sour Soup during Purim originates from an interpretation of the Book of Esther. Some believe that the name "Esther" is derived from the Hebrew word "mar," meaning "bitter." This connection to bitterness led to the incorporation of sour flavors in Purim dishes.

Now, let's move on to the recipe:

- 1 pound of soup meat (beef or chicken)
- 2 soup bones
- Water for boiling
- 2 leeks, sliced like noodles
- Cooked tomatoes, cooled and strained
- Cauliflower, chopped into small florets
- 2 tablespoons of sugar
- A pinch of sour salt (citric acid)
- Pepper and salt, to taste
- 2 egg yolks
- Cold water

1. Start by boiling the soup meat and bones in a pot of water. This will create a flavorful broth base for the soup. Cook until the meat is tender and easily falls apart. Skim off any impurities or foam that rise to the surface.

2. Once the meat is cooked, remove it from the pot and set it aside. Discard the bones, as they have served their purpose in flavoring the broth.

3. In the same pot, add the sliced leeks, cooked tomatoes, cauliflower, sugar, sour salt, pepper, and salt. These ingredients will enhance the flavors and add depth to the soup. Stir well to combine.

4. Allow the soup to simmer over medium heat, letting all the ingredients meld together. This will take approximately 15-20 minutes, or until the vegetables are tender and the flavors have developed.

5. In a small bowl, beat the egg yolks with a little salt and cold water. This mixture will act as a thickening agent for the soup.

6. Gradually add the beaten egg yolks to the pot, stirring constantly. It is crucial not to allow the soup to boil after adding the yolks, as this could result in their curdling. Continue stirring until the soup is thickened to your desired consistency.

7. Once the soup has thickened, return the cooked meat to the pot and heat it through. This step allows the flavors of the meat to infuse the soup further.

Your Sour Soup is now ready to be served! Garnish with fresh herbs, such as parsley or dill, for added freshness and aroma. This hearty and tangy soup pairs well with crusty bread or traditional Jewish challah.

Similar recipe dishes that you might enjoy include:

- Sweet and Sour Cabbage Soup: This soup combines tender cabbage, tangy vinegar, and a touch of sweetness. It's a comforting and flavorful dish enjoyed in various Jewish communities.

- Pickle Soup: Don't let the name deceive you! Pickle Soup is a beloved dish in many Eastern European countries, including Jewish communities. It features a comforting broth flavored with pickles, potatoes, carrots, and herbs.

- Borscht: Widely popular in Eastern European Jewish cuisine, Borscht is a vibrant beet soup. It is often served cold and topped with sour cream, making it a refreshing and nutritious option.

These dishes share a common thread of balancing sour and sweet flavors, creating a unique and delicious taste experience. Enjoy exploring these recipes and incorporating them into your holiday celebrations!



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