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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Monday, February 8, 2010

Pickle soup turns skeptic into fan

By Linda Cicero
McClatchy-Tribune News Service

I admit being skeptical about pickle soup, but when dozens of readers responded to Sandy K.'s request for this Polish Michigan specialty, I had to give it a try. Amazingly, the soup has a wonderful balance of creamy and tart that's perfect on a winter's day.

"We are originally from Michigan and Polish and have found a recipe for this soup in all five of our Polish cookbooks," wrote J. Dombrowski of Huntsville, Ala. He included with the recipes a note by Robert Strybel, author of "Polish Heritage Cookery," who wrote that to "do the soup up right, you will need some genuine Polish-style brine cured dill pickles. The vinegar-cured variety you get at the supermarket will not do."

Louise Halbert, also of Huntsville, sent a recipe a friend translated from her mother's Polish cookbook.


4 dill pickles (brine-cured if possible)

2 tablespoons flour

2 tablespoons butter

4 cups beef or chicken stock

2 cups peeled and cubed potatoes

1 cup thinly sliced celery

2 carrots, coarsely grated

Salt and pepper to taste

1 cup sour cream, divided

1 teaspoon fresh snipped dill, or to taste

Dice the pickles fine and dust with flour. Saute briefly in the butter. Add the stock, potatoes, celery and carrots and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a bare simmer, cover and cook 30 minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste. Whisk a little of the hot soup into cup of the sour cream, then whisk mixture into the pot. Taste and add some of the dill pickle juice if more tartness is desired. Serve immediately (if you let the soup get too hot, it may curdle) with sour cream dolloped on top, sprinkled with the dill. Makes 8 servings.

Per serving: 176 calories (54 percent from fat), 10.8 g fat (5.9 g saturated, 2.9 g monounsaturated), 26.2 mg cholesterol, 3.8 g protein, 17.1 g carbohydrates, 2.6 g fiber, 1,141 mg sodium.