This soup is served everywhere in Alpine Europe, the recipe below is a good base from which to start as there are many variations – some use more or less chilli and tomato, some are altogether more “beefy” by adding a more concentrated beef stock. In mine (picture) the beef is in quite large strips however you can cube – smaller cubes have a tendency to shred which is also good if that’s what you want. However you decide to make it the key ingredients in giving this soup its distinctive taste are the crushed fennel seeds and paprika. Again the amount they are used in varies according to taste.
You will need:
1 Tbsp Olive oil
Knob of butter
1 onion, finley diced
2lb 4oz Braising beef, cubed/sliced
Flour 1-2 Tbsp
2 Tbsp paprika (mix of hot and sweet or either)
1 Tsp caraway seeds crushed
1/2 Tsp dried thyme
1 clove garlic, crushed and diced
2 Pts beef stock
2 red/green/yellow peppers, seeded and diced
1 red chilli, seeded and diced
400g chopped tomatoes
1 Tbsp tomato puree
1lb potatoes, peeled and cut into cubes
Soured creme (optional)
In a large pan, heat the oil and butter and sweat the onion for about 8 mins, until it begins to soften. Toss the meat in the flour to coat and increase the heat of the pan and add the meat, brown on all sides. Add the paprika lower the heat and stir thoroughly.
Add in the crushed caraway seeds, thyme, garlic and stock to cover and stir. Simmer gently for around 2 hours.
Add the peppers, diced chilli, tomatoes and tomato puree and potatoes to the pan. mix thoroughly and add more stock to cover. Simmer gently for another 30 mins or until the potatoes are cooked and the meat is tender. Season well and add half a table spoon of the soured creme if using.
Serve with crusty bread.