A direct translation of zupa ogórkowa, the soup’s Polish name, would have you believe this was a simple sweet cucumber soup, but luckily, it’s not.
If you’re into your pickles, this soup will tickle your fancy – it’s bold, and sour and incredibly morish. A little rustic, steeped in hundreds of years of tradition, it’s a recipe my Great Grandmother used to make and one that has been passed on in the family for generations.
One word of advice when it comes to the type of pickles to use. Avoid cucumbers pickled with sugar and vinegar. And don’t be fooled by labels – Polskie Ogorki are not the right ones either…just check the ingredients list. I’ve found that Eskal’s canned Dill Pickles, pickled with salt, some garlic, pepper and dill are most suitable. And with that combo of flavours, what’s not to love?
Dill pickle soup | zupa ogórkowa
The secret to the soup is in the pickles! Find ones that are pickled with salt only, such as the Eskal brand’s Dill Pickles. Cucumbers pickled with vinegar and added sugar are not suitable for this recipe. Serve with some lightly grilled croutons or hard boiled eggs if you wish. Fro a vegetarian version, use chicken0style or vegetable stock.
For the stock base:
- 4 cups chicken stock
- 3 small potatoes, peeled and diced
- 1 small carrot, peeled and diced
- 1 small parsnip, peeled and diced
- 1 stick celery, diced
- 1 bay leaf
- 3 seeds all spice
For the dill pickle soup:
- 4-5 dill pickles, grated finely or processed to rough pulp in a food processor
- 3 tbsp sour cream, at room temperature
- salt and pepper to taste
To make the stock base: place stock, diced potatoes, carrot, parsnip and celery in a large stockpot. Add bay leaf and all spice. Bring to a boil and simmer for about 15 minutes, or until the potatoes are almost cooked.
To make the dill pickle soup: once the potatoes are soft, add grated dill pickles to the mix and cook for a further 10 minutes. At this time, transfer 2 ladlefuls (about 1 cup) of soup into a bowl. Add sour cream (at room temperature) to the same and mix to combine. Pour the sour cream mixture back into the pot, stir through a few times and turn off the heat.
To serve: divide soup between 4 bowls and serve on its own or with some croutons or hard boiled eggs.